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Author Topic: Semipelagianism, Original Sin and Ancestral Sin  (Read 20130 times) Average Rating: 0
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Kaste
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« Reply #135 on: July 27, 2009, 01:49:17 AM »

Hello Ladies and Gentlemen,

After following the entire thread, one important thing is missing:

"We believe Holy Baptism...to be of the highest necessity.  For without it none is able to be saved...And therefore, it is necessary even for infants, since they also are subject to original sin, and without Baptism are not able to obtain its remission.  And forasmuch as infants are men, and as such need salvation, since they have not received the remission of hereditary sin, are, of necessity, subject to eternal punishment, and consequently cannot without Baptism be saved." 

-Decree XVI, The Confessions of Dositheus from the Sixth Chapter of Acts and Decrees of the Synod of Jerusalem 1672. 

If not because of "inherited guilt/sin from Adam" why are the babies in danger of hellfire if unbaptized? 

K

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« Reply #136 on: July 27, 2009, 03:33:58 AM »

Kaste, could you please provide a more descriptive citation?  If it is from a book, page number.  If it is from a website, a URL.  Also, translator, etc.  Anything that can help others pinpoint the exact version you are drawing from.

Thanks,

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« Reply #137 on: July 27, 2009, 07:49:35 AM »

Quote
Hello Ladies and Gentlemen,

After following the entire thread, one important thing is missing:

"We believe Holy Baptism...to be of the highest necessity.  For without it none is able to be saved...And therefore, it is necessary even for infants, since they also are subject to original sin, and without Baptism are not able to obtain its remission.  And forasmuch as infants are men, and as such need salvation, since they have not received the remission of hereditary sin, are, of necessity, subject to eternal punishment, and consequently cannot without Baptism be saved."

-Decree XVI, The Confessions of Dositheus from the Sixth Chapter of Acts and Decrees of the Synod of Jerusalem 1672.

If not because of "inherited guilt/sin from Adam" why are the babies in danger of hellfire if unbaptized?

K

Your indicated source has no meaning and force of dogma to us, since it is well known that the Decrees of the Synod of Jerusalem are a fruit of the so-called "Western Captivity". At the time, many Orthodox clergymen studied theology in Catholic seminaries when leaving in the West, so the cultural influence of Roman Catholicism on Orthodoxy was at its peak. Also, this council was held against the un-orthodox teachings of Patriarch Cyril Lucaris, who was introducing Calvinist ideas in Orthodoxy from his highly influential position: I think we should understand as 'good' only the 'negative' pronouncements (that is the anathemas against unorthodox Calvinist theories) rather then the positive theological conclusions of that local Council - its Panorthodoxy can also be easily discussed, since most of the results of the 1672 Synod have been widely rejected by many Orthodox theologians and clergy, or have never been applied in concrete. For example, the same word 'transsubstantiation' has been immediately rejected by the Orthodox and has never entered our official theology, since it expresses a Roman Catholic approach to the Mystery of Holy Eucharist which is foreign to EO. I think that most of modern Orthodox will state that this Synod has a good authority but no infallibility; the only certain Synods which issued infallible statements are the fist seven Ecumenical Councils common to RCism (even when confirming the decisions of the previous local synods), plus the Eigth Ecumenical Council of 879/880 AD (since it was signed by the five Patriarchs). Even the highly authoritative and generally accepted canons and doctrines of Costantinople V (the so-called Palamite Synod) are not "infallible": in this case, they are just in agreement with the Faith of the Church (which doesn't mean they're infallible statements!). To give you an example: the writings of the Church fathers are not infallible (as Holy Scripture is) on matters of faith, yet they have a high degree of authority. It's the agreement of a Father with the living and experienced Faith of the Church which seals those writings as correct and authoritative to us. The same can be said of the Ecumenical Councils: these are infallible in content, language and decisions, and are exact pronunciations of faith on the same level as the Holy Bible and the Liturgical Life of the Church, while the local councils can be fallible and yet have some authority. What's important with the Council of Jerusalem is its rejection of Calvinism, that's it!

In Christ,   Alex

PS: In case you might think the Church is not infallible because it accepted fallible statements in the Council of Jerusalem: the hierarchy is made of fallible human beings, it's the consent of the Church in its entirety which forms the Holy-Spirit enlightened conscience of the Orthodox Church. This is true especially if you give a look at the acceptance of iconoclasm by most hierarchs at the time before the 7th Ecumenical Council... its the faith of the laymen believers which prevailed after all: this is the true force of Orthodoxy!
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« Reply #138 on: July 27, 2009, 10:58:26 AM »

Nebel:
http://catholicity.elcore.net/ConfessionOfDositheus.html

Alexander:

Don't you think it odd that only the first 7 councils are infallible? 

And are you really pursuaded that "Western Captivity" is an acceptable excuse for the Church to teach error?  Seems a Church worth its salt would have not been seduced by error be it from Platonists, Mohammedans, or so-called Latins. 

K
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« Reply #139 on: July 27, 2009, 11:53:47 AM »

Nebel:
http://catholicity.elcore.net/ConfessionOfDositheus.html

Alexander:

Don't you think it odd that only the first 7 councils are infallible?


First, they aren't the first councils the Church held.  The 7 refer to others, parts of which they adopted.

Why do you think it odd that the 7 are infallible?

Quote
And are you really pursuaded that "Western Captivity" is an acceptable excuse for the Church to teach error?

What do you mean by teach error?

The Infallibility of the Councils is the antiobody the Body of Christ develop to repel heretical infection.  As your source notes:
Quote
The Orthodox authorities gathered for the Synod of Jerusalem alleged the 1629 Confession to have been a forgery by Calvinists. Chapter I. quotes widely from Cyril’s homilies, to contradict each chapter of the 1629 Confession. Chapters II. and III. give other evidences and reasons to dispute Cyril’s authorship of the 1629 Confession, and, more importantly, to demonstrate that it was not an official act of an Orthodox patriarch. Chapter IV. explains why the faith of the Eastern Church has never been Calvinistic, particularly concerning the Holy Eucharist as Real Presence and true sacrifice. Chapter V. incorporates acts, decrees, and letters of previous synods against the 1629 Confession. Chapter VI. sets forth the Orthodox faith in eighteen decrees and four questions, commonly known as The Confession of Dositheus, corresponding precisely to the chapters and questions in the 1629 Confession
In other words they were responding to something OUTSIDE the Church.  The Definitions of the Ecumenical Councils are only for those within the Church. Not, as the Confession of Dositheus explicitely is, a polemic against those outside the Church, as it's epilogue states:
Quote
But concerning all these things it hath been treated at large and most lucidly in what is called The Confession of the Eastern Church, by George, of Chios, from Coresius in his [treatises] concerning the Mysteries, and of predestination, and of grace, and of free-will, and of the intercession and adoration of Saints, and of the adoration of Eikons, and in the Refutation composed by him of the illicit Synod of the heretics holden on a certain occasion in Flanders, and in many other [treatises]; by Gabriel, of Peloponnesus, Metropolitan of Philadelphia; and by Gregory Protosyncellus of Chios in his [treatises] concerning the Mysteries; by Jeremias, the Most Holy Patriarch <171> of Constantinople, in three dogmatic and Synodical Letters to the Lutherans of Tubingen in Germany; by John, Priest, and Economus of Constantinople, surnamed Nathaniel; by Meletius Syrigus, of Crete, in the Orthodox Refutation composed by him of the Chapters and Questions of the said Cyril {Lucar ELC}; by Theophanes, Patriarch of Jerusalem, in his dogmatic Epistle to the Lithuanians, and in innumerable other [Epistles]. And before these hath it been spoken most excellently of these matters by Symeon, of Thessalonica, and before him by all the Fathers, and by the Œcumenical Synods, by ecclesiastical historians too; and even by writers of secular history under the Christian Autocrats of Rome, have these matters been mentioned incidently {sic ELC}; by all of whom, without any controversy, the aforesaid were received from the Apostles; whose traditions, whether by writing, or by word, have through the Fathers descended until us. Further, the argument derived from the heretics also confirmeth the aforesaid. For the Nestorians after the year of Salvation, 428, the Armenians too, and the Copts, and the <172> Syrians, and further even the Ethiopians, who dwell at the Equator, and beyond this towards the tropics of Capricorn, whom those that are there commonly call Campesii, after the year ... {The date is wanting in the text. JNWBR} of the Incarnation broke away from the Catholic Church; and each of these hath as peculiar only its heresy, as all know from the Acts of the Œcumenical Synods. Albeit, as concerning the purpose and number of the Sacred Mysteries, and all what hath been said above — except their own particular heresy, as hath been said — they entirely believe with the Catholic Church; as we see with our own eyes every hour, and learn by experience and conversation, here in the Holy City of Jerusalem, in which there either dwell, or are continually sojourning, vast numbers of them all, as well learned, such as they have, as illiterate.

Let, therefore, prating and innovating heretics keep silence, and not endeavour by stealing some sentences, [as] against us, from the Scriptures and the Fathers, to cunningly bolster up falsehood, as all apostates and heretics have ever done; and let them say <173> this one thing only, that in contriving excuses {cf. Psalm 140:4} for sins they have chosen to speak wickedness against God, {cf. Psalm 74:6} and blasphemies against the Saints.

Let us briefly suffice for the reputation of the falsehoods of the adversaries, which they have devised against the Eastern Church, alleging in support of their falsehoods the incoherent and impious Chapters of the said Cyril  And let it not be for a sign to be contradicted {cf. Luke 2:34} of those heretics that unjustly calumniate us, as though they spake truly; but for a sign to be believed, that is for reformation of their innovations, and for their return to the Catholic and Apostolic Church; in which their forefathers also were of old, and assisted at those Synods and contests against heretics, which these now reject and revile. For it was unreasonable on their part, especially as they considered themselves to be wise, to have listened to men that were lovers of self; and profane, and that spake not from the Holy Spirit, but from the prince of lies, <174> and to have forsaken the Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church, which God hath purchased with the Blood of His own Son; {cf. Acts 20:28} and to have abandoned her. For otherwise there will overtake those that have separated from the Church the pains that are reserved for heathens and publicans; but the Lord who hath ever protected her against all enemies, will not neglect the Catholic Church; to Him be glory and dominion unto the ages of the ages. Amen

Answering a fool in his folly, which is what answering those outside the Church with their own theology is, sometimes foolish things are said.


Quote
Seems a Church worth its salt would have not been seduced by error be it from Platonists, Mohammedans, or so-called Latins. 


Seems any Church worth its salt would be visible.

Seduced by error.  Hardly, the Church didn't become Calvinist, which is error, nor driven into the arms of the Vatican (Dositheus also composed, as your source quotes the Encyclopedia Britannica Dosítheos’ "largely compilations from the Greek Fathers. They were directed against the Roman Catholic church and the Eastern Catholics").  Your source states: It was formally transmitted by the Eastern Patriarchs to the Russian Church in 1721, and through it to certain Bishops of the Church of England, as an ultimatum to be received without further question or conference by all who would be in communion with the Orthodox Church.

That being said, what specific error are you holding ias contained in the quote?
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« Reply #140 on: July 27, 2009, 12:48:11 PM »

Quote
And are you really pursuaded that "Western Captivity" is an acceptable excuse for the Church to teach error?  Seems a Church worth its salt would have not been seduced by error be it from Platonists, Mohammedans, or so-called Latins.
Let Jesus Christ (may he forgive all heresiarchs and unbelievers) answer for me to your question:
Quote
For there shall arise false Christs and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders, insomuch as to deceive (if possible) even the elect.

Thus, I consider it an honour and a proof of bliss for the Church that the Orthodox leaders sometimes taught error but Orthodoxy survived, because it is a symptom that the Orthodox Church is truly the Apostolic Community elected by Jesus. The false Christs and false prophets of the Papacy and the Western cancer have seduced with great power the hierarchs of our church; many of them were deceived, proclaimed falsities as truths from revelation, and even gave our Church as food for the Roman beasts, like the first Christians biten by lions; yet we have survived and truth has prevailed, for those we considered to be elect apostatised and reveled to the True Church the paths of Satan!

In Christ,  Alex

PS: For the rest, my brother ialmisry answered exhaustively to your innuendo, and I have nothing to say but a small correction: I said there are EIGHT Ecumenical Councils, and not Seven. The use of saying Seven is exclusively for the sake of ecumenism, so that a dialogue with Rome might still be brought forth; truly, I am not glad of this, for if I were in our predecessors, I would have deposed the first heretic Pope and replaced him with an Orthodox one (only the political power of the Holy Roman Empire made this idea an impossibility). I don't believe in any restauration of the Holy See of Peter until Judgment Day. My personal opinion, of course, and I pray God for better times when Rome will abandon error and come back to Orthodoxy.
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« Reply #141 on: July 27, 2009, 01:22:51 PM »

Quote
And are you really pursuaded that "Western Captivity" is an acceptable excuse for the Church to teach error?  Seems a Church worth its salt would have not been seduced by error be it from Platonists, Mohammedans, or so-called Latins.
Let Jesus Christ (may he forgive all heresiarchs and unbelievers) answer for me to your question:
Quote
For there shall arise false Christs and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders, insomuch as to deceive (if possible) even the elect.

Thus, I consider it an honour and a proof of bliss for the Church that the Orthodox leaders sometimes taught error but Orthodoxy survived, because it is a symptom that the Orthodox Church is truly the Apostolic Community elected by Jesus. The false Christs and false prophets of the Papacy and the Western cancer have seduced with great power the hierarchs of our church; many of them were deceived, proclaimed falsities as truths from revelation, and even gave our Church as food for the Roman beasts, like the first Christians biten by lions; yet we have survived and truth has prevailed, for those we considered to be elect apostatised and reveled to the True Church the paths of Satan!

In Christ,  Alex

PS: For the rest, my brother ialmisry answered exhaustively to your innuendo, and I have nothing to say but a small correction: I said there are EIGHT Ecumenical Councils, and not Seven. The use of saying Seven is exclusively for the sake of ecumenism, so that a dialogue with Rome might still be brought forth; truly, I am not glad of this, for if I were in our predecessors, I would have deposed the first heretic Pope and replaced him with an Orthodox one (only the political power of the Holy Roman Empire made this idea an impossibility). I don't believe in any restauration of the Holy See of Peter until Judgment Day. My personal opinion, of course, and I pray God for better times when Rome will abandon error and come back to Orthodoxy.
Just for clarification: I'm not dogmatic on the 8th Council, except that every Orthodox who does not accept it as Ecumenical, fully accepts its decrees.  It also contrasts with the Synod of Jerusalem, in that I don't know of any Orthodox ever who claimed that the Synod of Jerusalem was Ecumenical, including the Synod, whose Acts refer to it as a local council, and I don't recall it claiming the title "Ecumenical."

The full Acts of the Synod of Jerusalem are available in English, btw:
http://books.google.com/books?id=G1h5ijh3YcwC&printsec=frontcover&dq=synod+of+Jerusalem
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« Reply #142 on: July 27, 2009, 02:28:25 PM »

Ialmisry:

The error, according to the Orthodox on this thread who do not subscribe to the concept of inherited guilt, is that which  Dositheus and 1672 Council of Jerusalem taught: unbaptized babies go to hell because they are born with "hereditary transgression" and "hereditary sin".  Why else would they be damned? 

I think it odd Orthodox only accept 7 councils as infallible because it too perfectly coincides with its break with Rome.  I find it unpursuasive that after Rome was jettisoned it just so happened no further infallible councils were needed.  Smells fishy.

Alexander:

It is not so easy to throw out the 1672 Council of Jerusalem under pretense of "Western Captivity."  That council was called precisely to purify the Orthodox Church of Calivinist and Latin tendencies.  Yet it affirmed the Latin concept of hereditary sin. 

So I ask you, what council can you provide that is equal or above the 1672 Council that "corrected" this so-called Latin concept of hereditary sin? 

K
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« Reply #143 on: July 27, 2009, 02:39:45 PM »

It is well known that the canons of Constantinople V considered itself Ecumenical, that the Pope of Rome and the Patriarchs of the East accepted it, and that since 1014 AD these canons were followed by both East and West equally (in 1014 the Pope violated the Horos through the Filioque addition). It is also known that Rome claimed that Constantinople V was a Robber Ecumenical Council, which is a clear demonstration that the East granted it equal ecumenicity as the other ones. I just wonder: what does Constantinople V has LESS then the other Ecumenical Councils, so that there's somebody denying its ecumenicity? For:

1) It happened to be approved before the West-East Schism
2) Considered itself Ecumenical
3) Was approved by all the Eastern Patriarchs
4) Pope John VIII applied its Horos restoring Patriarch Photios on his legimitate chair in Constantinople, thus showing approval of its contents
5) The decrees of the Council had been preserved in the Roman archives until they decided to annul its validity and approve the Robber Council of 869/879 AD
6) Its formulations of faith against the Filioque clause are still a part of Orthodox belief and are a base for condemning the Pope of heresy
7) It is its decrees which sanctioned the 3rd Council of Constantinople as ecumenical even for Rome who originally doubted of its contents
Cool It was signed by lots of bishops from the East and also by Papal delegates as representatives of the West
9) It does defend and confess the original doctrine of faith of the Church Fathers as the Orthodox Church has received it
10) It even had an imperial convocation
11) Many contemporary theologians regard it as Ecumenical, and RCs are aware that the Eastern Patriarchs regarded it as such in their Encyclical to Rome. No single authority in the Church also never discussed this official pronounciation of the Eastern Patriarchs, AFAIK.
To add support to this, I also quote from OrthodoxWiki:
Quote
This council is not regarded as ecumenical by all Orthodox Christians, but some major voices in the Orthodox world do so, including 20th century theologians Fr. John S. Romanides and Fr. George Metallinos (both of whom refer repeatedly to the "Eighth and Ninth Ecumenical Councils"), as well as Fr. George Dragas and Metropolitan Hierotheos (Vlachos) of Nafpaktos.
Further, the Encyclical of the Eastern Patriarchs refers explicitly to the "Eighth Ecumenical Council" regarding the synod of 879-880 and was signed by the patriarchs of Constantinople, Jerusalem, Antioch, and Alexandria as well as the Holy Synods of the first three.
I think that it's the Encyclical of the Eastern Patriarchs to reflect its correct use as an Ecumenical Council at best. Maybe a common statement from the Orthodox Church of today would put an end to the issue... let's hope for some clarification...

To Kaste: there's no need of another council to be convocated against it. Can I ask you what denomination are you from? Maybe we can understand each other if I know this. And another question: do you think that new born children are willfully guilty? Do you think that an infant should be regarded as a criminal who voluntarily shows hatred towards God and commits acts contrary to divine law?


In Christ,  Alex
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« Reply #144 on: July 27, 2009, 03:06:15 PM »

Ialmisry:

The error, according to the Orthodox on this thread who do not subscribe to the concept of inherited guilt, is that which  Dositheus and 1672 Council of Jerusalem taught: unbaptized babies go to hell because they are born with "hereditary transgression" and "hereditary sin".  Why else would they be damned?


No Orthodox subscribe to inherited guilt. It was one of the problems St. Augustine's Orthodox contempories had with his thought, which infected the West.

Quote
I think it odd Orthodox only accept 7 councils as infallible because it too perfectly coincides with its break with Rome.


Perfectly?  Constantinople IV was held nearly two centuries before Cardinal Umberto excommunicated himself from the Catholic Church.

Quote
I find it unpursuasive that after Rome was jettisoned it just so happened no further infallible councils were needed.

No problem that for nearly three centuries before Constantine none were needed?

Either Constantinople IV (879) was needed and held as Ecumenical, and the Vatican excommunicated itself by abandoning it, or it was not needed and held, in which case the Church went for nearly the same amount of time without the need for a Council as she did before Constanine.  Its not our fault the Vatican found itself further and further mired in heresy after it left Orthodoxy.


 
Quote
Smells fishy.

Sure it's not you?

Quote
Alexander:

It is not so easy to throw out the 1672 Council of Jerusalem under pretense of "Western Captivity."  That council was called precisely to purify the Orthodox Church of Calivinist and Latin tendencies.  Yet it affirmed the Latin concept of hereditary sin.  


LOL. That "council" was called to reconsecrate the new Church of the Nativity.  And it wasn't intended to purify of Latin tendencies, but to adapt (not adopt) Trent's attack (the decrees of that council was available) on its Calvinist sibling.  Since Calvinism didn't arise in the Church, there was no Church parameters to deal with it.

Quote
So I ask you, what council can you provide that is equal or above the 1672 Council that "corrected" this so-called Latin concept of hereditary sin? 

Equal to Jerusalem.  My, you set the bar rather low.
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« Reply #145 on: July 27, 2009, 03:30:58 PM »

Yes, I was taught that unbaptized babies got to "hell", but which one? Gehenna or Hades? Hades, Sheol, Abraham's bosom, Limbo - a theologically vague "waiting room" where souls can neither go to heaven nor hell. Baptism opens the doors to heaven. Abraham's bosom is where the souls of the old testament patriarchs and dead believers went, and when Jesus died and "descended to hell" (eg. Sheol) he opened those doors and they came to paradise with him.

None of these babies "sinned". But they need baptism to go to heaven. I think there are some noises now in Rome that God in his infinite mercy would eventually take these sinless souls to heaven. While this is not official doctrine, I think it's a common belief. Still, there's a couple of points to remember, among them the necessity of baptism for salvation and the mercy of God. That's certainly been my understanding.

As for Hades/Sheol and Purgatory, I'm sure that's another discussion, but I think it touches on the same issues. Maybe we should treat it in the same category as "limbo" as its another waiting place.
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« Reply #146 on: July 27, 2009, 04:06:20 PM »

Quote
Perfectly?  Constantinople IV was held nearly two centuries before Cardinal Umberto excommunicated himself from the Catholic Church.
"excommunicated himself"... sounds good! LOL
Anyway, that's talking, ialmisry!

After these claims from you, Kesle, I'm guessing you might be Roman Catholic, since you seem to take a position in favore of the Frankish apostate Popes here. Or maybe do you belong to some kind of non-denominational church, trying to say the Orthodox are heretic just like Catholics? I tremble in fear with these words.

In Christ,   Alex
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« Reply #147 on: July 27, 2009, 10:10:10 PM »

I will post it once more and hope for an answer that shows a later council equal or above that corrects the 1672 Jerusalem Council's idea of inherited guilt damning unbaptized babies: 

"And forasmuch as infants are men, and as such need salvation, since they have not received the remission of hereditary sin, are, of necessity, subject to eternal punishment, and consequently cannot without Baptism be saved."  Council of Jerusalem 1672

John:
We cannot assume Limbo because the 1672 council says they are eternally punished.  The Orthodox here must ask themselves why babies are damned if there is no concept of inherited guilt. 

Iamisery:
No, Orthodox did accept the concept of inherited guilt.  Please pay attention to the quote. 

Alexander:
Please show me where I can read the Constantinople Council of 879.
It seems fishy that the Orthodox never produced an infallible council after the break with Rome (or perhaps they did produce infallible statements just not in councils?), which begs the question, deep down inside, perhaps the Orthodox know they need Rome if they were ever to produce anything infallible again.





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« Reply #148 on: July 27, 2009, 10:11:44 PM »


Thanks.
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« Reply #149 on: July 27, 2009, 10:57:18 PM »

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We cannot assume Limbo because the 1672 council says they are eternally punished.  The Orthodox here must ask themselves why babies are damned if there is no concept of inherited guilt. 

Well, that's absurd notion, and you'd be hard pressed to find someone to repeat that in 2009. I did come across something semi-official a few years ago to the effect that they don't know where these souls go. "Whoah, what about those old pre-Vatican II catechisms." They were willing to look at the entire corpus of documents on limbo too.

Ah... found the quote, from Joseph Ratzinger:

Quote
“This state people called limbo. In the course of our century, that has gradually come to seem problematic to us. This was one way in which people sought to justify the necessity of baptizing infants as early as possible, but the solution is itself questionable. Finally, the pope made a decisive turn in the encyclical Evangelium Vitae, a change already anticipated by the Catechism of the Catholic Church, when he expressed the simple hope that God is powerful enough to draw to himself all those who were unable to receive the sacrament.” (God and the World, Ignatius Press, 2002, p. 401)

I don't think Limbo was anything other than theological speculation, a kind of counter-reaction to the views stated earlier in the thread. Ratzinger, despite his reputation as a "conservative" in the press on moral issues, was considered a theological liberal at Vatican II and has been demonized on some traditionalist sites - who don't like anything in the past 60 years. Personally I think he's just what the Church needs, just like his predecessor. I can live without either Limbo or babies going to hell.
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« Reply #150 on: July 27, 2009, 10:59:54 PM »

I will post it once more and hope for an answer that shows a later council equal or above that corrects the 1672 Jerusalem Council's

Anything that bears the signature of the EP, the Pope of Alexandria, the Patriarch of Antioch, along with other patriarchs would fit the bill. The Decree has the signature of Dositheus as Patriarch of Jerusalem and ends with the signature of a former Patriarch of Jerusalem.  But inbetween there is no signature of any other primate of an Orthodox Church, nor an official representative of them, although there are clerics from as far as Russia and Georgia among the signers:
http://books.google.com/books?id=G1h5ijh3YcwC&pg=PA174&dq=acts+of+synod+of+jerusalem+Parthenius+Nazareth


Quote
idea of inherited guilt damning unbaptized babies: 

"And forasmuch as infants are men, and as such need salvation, since they have not received the remission of hereditary sin, are, of necessity, subject to eternal punishment, and consequently cannot without Baptism be saved."  Council of Jerusalem 1672

John:
We cannot assume Limbo because the 1672 council says they are eternally punished.  The Orthodox here must ask themselves why babies are damned if there is no concept of inherited guilt. 

No, we don't.  You Vatican and Calvinist types can argue among yourselves over it.

Btw, have you read the whole council?

Quote
Iamisery:
No, Orthodox did accept the concept of inherited guilt.  Please pay attention to the quote.

I do. It doesn't say anything about inherited guilt.  Nowhere in the article you quote:
Quote
We believe Holy Baptism, which was instituted by the Lord, and is conferred in the name of the Holy Trinity, to be of the highest necessity. For without it none is able to be saved, as the Lord saith, “Whosoever is not born of water and of the Spirit, shall in no wise enter into the Kingdom of the Heavens.” {John 3:5} And, therefore, it is necessary even for infants, since they also are subject to original sin, and without Baptism are not able to obtain its remission. Which the Lord shewed when he said, not of some only, but simply and absolutely, “Whosoever is not born [again],” which is the same as saying, “All that after the coming of Christ the Saviour would enter into the Kingdom of the Heavens must be <140> regenerated.” And forasmuch as infants are men, and as such need salvation; needing salvation, they need also Baptism. And those that are not regenerated, since they have not received the remission of hereditary sin, are, of necessity, subject to eternal punishment, and consequently cannot without Baptism be saved; so that even infants ought, of necessity, to be baptised. Moreover, infants are saved, as is said in Matthew; {Matthew 19:12} but he that is not baptised is not saved. And consequently even infants must of necessity be baptised. And in the Acts {Acts 8:12; 16:33} it is said that the whole houses were baptised, and consequently the infants. To this the ancient Fathers also witness explicitly, and among them Dionysius in his Treatise concerning the Ecclesiastical Hierarchy; and Justin in his fifty-sixth Question, who saith expressly, “And they are vouchsafed the benefits of Baptism by the faith of those that bring them to Baptism.” And Augustine saith that it is an Apostolical tradition, that children are saved through Baptism; and in another place, “The Church giveth to babes <141> the feet of others, that they may come; and the hearts of others, that they may believe; and the tongues of others, that they may promise;” and in another place, “Our mother, the Church, furnisheth them with a particular heart.”

Now the matter of Baptism is pure water, and no other liquid. And it is performed by the Priest only, or in a case of unavoidable necessity, by another man, provided he be Orthodox, and have the intention proper to Divine Baptism. And the effects of Baptism are, to speak concisely, firstly, the remission of the hereditary transgression, and of any sins whatsoever which the baptised may have committed. Secondly, it delivereth him from the eternal punishment, to which he was liable, as well for original sin, as for mortal sins he may have individually committed. Thirdly, it giveth to such immortality; for in justifying them from past sins, it maketh them temples of God. And it may not be said, that any sin is not washed away through Baptism, which may have been previously committed; but to remain, though not imputed. For <142> that were indeed the height of impiety, and a denial, rather than a confession of piety. Yea, forsooth, all sin existing, or committed before Baptism, is blotted out, and is to be regarded as never existing or committed. For the forms of Baptism, and on either hand all the words that precede and that perfect Baptism, do indicate a perfect cleansing. And the same thing even the very names of Baptism do signify. For if Baptism be by the Spirit and by fire, {Matthew 3:11} it is manifest that it is in all a perfect cleansing; for the Spirit cleanseth perfectly. If it be light, {Hebrews 6:4} it dispelleth the darkness. If it be regeneration, {Titus 3:5} old things are passed away. And what are these except sins? If the baptised putteth off the old man, {Colossians 3:9} then sin also. If he putteth on Christ, {Galatians 3:27} then in effect he becometh free from sin through Baptism. For God is far from sinners. This Paul also teacheth more plainly, saying: “As through one [man] we, being many, were made sinners, so through one [are we made] righteous.” {Romans 5:19} And if righteous, then free from sin. For it is not <143> possible for life and death to be in the same [person]. If Christ truly died, then remission of sin through the Spirit is true also. Hence it is evident that all who are baptised and fall asleep while babes are undoubtedly saved, being predestinated through the death of Christ. Forasmuch as they are without any sin; — without that common [to all], because delivered therefrom by the Divine laver, and without any of their own, because as babes they are incapable of committing sin; — and consequently are saved. Moreover, Baptism imparteth an indelible character, as doth also the Priesthood. For as it is impossible for any one to receive twice the same order of the Priesthood, so it is impossible for any once rightly baptised, to be again baptised, although he should fall even into myriads of sins, or even into actual apostacy from the Faith. For when he is willing to return unto the Lord, he receiveth again through the Mystery of Penance the adoption of a son, which he had lost.
http://catholicity.elcore.net/ConfessionOfDositheus.html

Nor  in the Calvinsit confession that Dositheus is refuting:
Quote
We believe that Baptism is a Sacrament instituted by the Lord, and unless a man has received it, he has no communion with Christ, from whose death, burial, and glorious resurrection the whole virtue and efficacy of Baptism proceeds; therefore, we are certain that to those who are baptized in the same form which our Lord commanded in the Gospel, both original and actual sins are pardoned, so that whosoever has been washed in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit are regenerate, cleansed, and justified. But concerning the repetition of it, we have no command to be rebaptized, therefore we must abstain from this indecent thing.


Quote
Alexander:
Please show me where I can read the Constantinople Council of 879.
http://www.geocities.com/trvalentine/orthodox/dragas_eighth.html
The Horos/Definition:
Quote
Jointly sanctifying and preserving intact the venerable and divine teaching of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, which has been established in the bosom of our mind, with unhesitating resolve and purity of faith, as well as the sacred ordinances and canonical stipulations of his holy disciples and Apostles with an unwavering judgement, and indeed, those Seven holy and ecumenical Synods which were directed by the inspiration of the one and the same Holy Spirit and effected the [Christian] preaching, and jointly guarding with a most honest and unshakeable resolve the canonical institutions invulnerable and unfalsified, we expel those who removed themselves from the Church, and embrace and regard worthy of receiving those of the same faith or teachers of orthodoxy to whom honor and sacred respect is due as they themselves ordered. Thus, having in mind and declaring all these things, we embrace with mind and tongue (τῇ διανοίᾳ καὶ γλώσσῃ) and declare to all people with a loud voice the Horos (Rule) of the most pure faith of the Christians which has come down to us from above through the Fathers, subtracting nothing, adding nothing, falsifying nothing; for subtraction and addition, when no heresy is stirred up by the ingenious fabrications of the evil one, introduces disapprobation of those who are exempt from blame and inexcusable assault on the Fathers. As for the act of changing with falsified words the Horoi (Rules, Boundaries) of the Fathers is much worse that the previous one. Therefore, this holy and ecumenical Synod embracing whole-heartedly and declaring with divine desire and straightness of mind, and establishing and erecting on it the firm edifice of salvation, thus we think and loudly proclaim this message to all:

"I believe in One God, Father Almighty, ... and in One Lord Jesus Christ, the Only-begotten Son of God... and in the Holy Spirit, the Lord ... who proceeds from the Father... [the whole Creed is cited here]

Thus we think, in this confession of faith we were we baptized, through this one the word of truth proved that every heresy is broken to pieces and canceled out. We enroll as brothers and fathers and coheirs of the heavenly city those who think thus. If anyone, however, dares to rewrite and call Rule of Faith some other exposition besides that of the sacred Symbol which has been spread abroad from above by our blessed and holy Fathers even as far as ourselves, and to snatch the authority of the confession of those divine men and impose on it his own invented phrases (ἰδίαις εὑρεσιολογίαις) and put this forth as a common lesson to the faithful or to those who return from some kind of heresy, and display the audacity to falsify completely (κατακιβδηλεῦσαι ἀποθρασυνθείη) the antiquity of this sacred and venerable Horos (Rule) with illegitimate words, or additions, or subtractions, such a person should, according to the vote of the holy and Ecumenical Synods, which has been already acclaimed before us, be subjected to complete defrocking if he happens to be one of the clergymen, or be sent away with an anathema if he happens to be one of the lay people."

Quote
It seems fishy that the Orthodox never produced an infallible council after the break with Rome (or perhaps they did produce infallible statements just not in councils?), which begs the question,

Speaking of questions, I've noticed that you have evaded Alexander's:
Can I ask you what denomination are you from?

Would you care to point out some need we would have for an Ecumenical Council after Nicea II or Constantinople IV?

Quote
deep down inside, perhaps the Orthodox know they need Rome if they were ever to produce anything infallible again.

LOL.  Tell the EP, he's making all these plans for a Great Council.  Your intervention can save us so much trouble. Roll Eyes

During the 60's there was discussion about having a Council like the Vatican had just had.  The preliminary investigation found no need, and when the chaos of Vatican II was coming to full fruit, the interest waned.

Of course for the Orthodox who believe in a 9th Council, Constantinople V, your point is mute.  And they are in communion with the rest of us Orthodox.
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« Reply #151 on: July 28, 2009, 07:22:06 AM »

Dear ialmisry,
I'm glad you also noticed how Kaste skipped my question.
Anyway, I feel like to answer to your previous question, dear Kaste, still hoping that you will be so courageous to come out and show us which Church you belong to, so that we can continue this discussion in a more lucid way. In fact, you can control our documents and confessions of faith to argument against them, while we can't do the same with you, and thus this is definitely a strange and unequal way to conduct a debate, don't you think?

It is of necessity to say that the Ecumenical Councils share a point in common which I forgot to add in my list: its content. All the Ecumenical Councils have mainly a triadological/christological content (and the two matters are the two sides of theology strictu sensu). In fact:

-Nicaea I defined Christ's nature as related to God the Father, condemning all heresies denying Christ's full divinity (christology/triadology)
-Constantinople I defined the Holy Spirit's relationship to God the Father, condemning pneumatomachism (triadology)
-Ephesus defined the hypostatic union in Christ, i.e. how the two persons are fully and perfectly united in one hypostasis and prosopon (christology)
-Chalcedon defined the distinction of natures in Christ, condemning monophysitism as a misunderstanding of the hypostatic union (christology)
-Constantinople II and III refined the relationships of divinity and humanity as far as wills and energies are concerned (christology)
-Nicaea II reaffirmed the previous doctrines on Christ and in conclusion affirmed the validity of iconography as a result of the hypostatic union (christology)
- Constantinople IV (Ecumenical?, I think so)clarifies that the the Holy Ghost doesn't proceed from the Son (triadology)
- Constantinople V (Ecumenical? - possibly) clarifies the distinction between God's essence and God's energies (triadology)

Definitely, no council after the aforementioned Constantinople V touched matters of triadology and christology, and since the Church Fathers have worked hard for some 1300 years to discuss these points, I don't think of a need for further Ecumenical Councils (still a Great Panorthodox Synod would truly be welcome, of course).

Hope this helps in understanding the Orthodox position.
In Christ,    Alex
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« Reply #152 on: July 29, 2009, 10:30:39 AM »

I will try this one final time:

"And forasmuch as infants are men, and as such need salvation, since they have not received the remission of hereditary sin, are, of necessity, subject to eternal punishment, and consequently cannot without Baptism be saved."  Council of Jerusalem 1672

Iamisry:

Why would your 1672 Council say unbaptized babies are damned? 

Alexander:

This error, that unbaptized babies are damned, was taught by 1672 Council of Jerusalem.  I will ask one final time for you to show me a council equal or above that corrected this.
   
Alexander and Iamisry:  You desire to know what visible Church I subscribe to:  Do not fret, all will be revealed soon. 

K
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« Reply #153 on: July 29, 2009, 11:03:09 AM »

I will try this one final time:

"And forasmuch as infants are men, and as such need salvation, since they have not received the remission of hereditary sin, are, of necessity, subject to eternal punishment, and consequently cannot without Baptism be saved."  Council of Jerusalem 1672

I don't know how much you know about Orthodoxy, but we don't do mantras.  No matter how much something is repeated, it doesn't make it.

Quote
Iamisry:

Why would your 1672 Council say unbaptized babies are damned? 


That has already been posted:

Iamisery:
No, Orthodox did accept the concept of inherited guilt.  Please pay attention to the quote.

I do. It doesn't say anything about inherited guilt.  Nowhere in the article you quote:
Quote
...And, therefore, it is necessary even for infants, since they also are subject to original sin, and without Baptism are not able to obtain its remission. Which the Lord shewed when he said, not of some only, but simply and absolutely,...And forasmuch as infants are men, and as such need salvation; needing salvation, they need also Baptism. And those that are not regenerated, since they have not received the remission of hereditary sin, are, of necessity, subject to eternal punishment, and consequently cannot without Baptism be saved; so that even infants ought, of necessity, to be baptised. Moreover, infants are saved, as is said in Matthew; {Matthew 19:12} but he that is not baptised is not saved. And consequently even infants must of necessity be baptised...And the effects of Baptism are, to speak concisely, firstly, the remission of the hereditary transgression, and of any sins whatsoever which the baptised may have committed. Secondly, it delivereth him from the eternal punishment, to which he was liable, as well for original sin, as for mortal sins he may have individually committed. Thirdly, it giveth to such immortality; for in justifying them from past sins, it maketh them temples of God. And it may not be said, that any sin is not washed away through Baptism, which may have been previously committed; but to remain, though not imputed. For that were indeed the height of impiety, and a denial, rather than a confession of piety. Yea, forsooth, all sin existing, or committed before Baptism, is blotted out, and is to be regarded as never existing or committed. For the forms of Baptism, and on either hand all the words that precede and that perfect Baptism, do indicate a perfect cleansing. And the same thing even the very names of Baptism do signify. For if Baptism be by the Spirit and by fire, {Matthew 3:11} it is manifest that it is in all a perfect cleansing; for the Spirit cleanseth perfectly. If it be light, {Hebrews 6:4} it dispelleth the darkness. If it be regeneration, {Titus 3:5} old things are passed away. And what are these except sins? If the baptised putteth off the old man, {Colossians 3:9} then sin also. If he putteth on Christ, {Galatians 3:27} then in effect he becometh free from sin through Baptism. For God is far from sinners. This Paul also teacheth more plainly, saying: “As through one [man] we, being many, were made sinners, so through one [are we made] righteous.” {Romans 5:19} And if righteous, then free from sin. For it is not possible for life and death to be in the same [person]. If Christ truly died, then remission of sin through the Spirit is true also. Hence it is evident that all who are baptised and fall asleep while babes are undoubtedly saved, being predestinated through the death of Christ. Forasmuch as they are without any sin; — without that common [to all], because delivered therefrom by the Divine laver, and without any of their own, because as babes they are incapable of committing sin; — and consequently are saved. Moreover, Baptism imparteth an indelible character, as doth also the Priesthood. For as it is impossible for any one to receive twice the same order of the Priesthood, so it is impossible for any once rightly baptised, to be again baptised, although he should fall even into myriads of sins, or even into actual apostacy from the Faith. For when he is willing to return unto the Lord, he receiveth again through the Mystery of Penance the adoption of a son, which he had lost.
http://catholicity.elcore.net/ConfessionOfDositheus.html

Quote
Alexander:

This error, that unbaptized babies are damned, was taught by 1672 Council of Jerusalem.  I will ask one final time for you to show me a council equal or above that corrected this.

As I've already posted, not hard, as Dositheus was the only Patriarch to sign it.

Btw, you haven't answered my question on whether you have read the whole Council, for instance, what it says for prayers for the departed and purgatory.

Quote
Alexander and Iamisry:  You desire to know what visible Church I subscribe to:  Do not fret, all will be revealed soon. 
Not sure it isn't already.  But we won't have to wait till the second coming for your announcement, will we?
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« Reply #154 on: July 29, 2009, 01:50:57 PM »

http://www.pravoslavieto.com/history/20/1934_mitr_Kallistos_Ware/The_Orthodox_Church_Kallistos_Ware.htm

FWIW here's Bishop Ware's description of the council.

Google unearthed additional material here:
http://www.crivoice.org/creeddositheus.html
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« Reply #155 on: July 29, 2009, 02:21:03 PM »

Discussing with you, Kaste, is as speaking to a wall (with a better chance that the wall will answer our questions).
Shall I answer to your question? Ok, I do.
The Council of Jerusalem was an heretic council held by two non fully orthodox Patriarchs without the consent and participation of the other two. Yes, many Orthodox have been and still are heretic. The Church is not formed of hierarchs, it's formed by laymen and clergymen together. There's no need to convoke a council to condemn every other single council held by heretics and heterodox. There have been hundreds of false councils in the past, and the Ecumenical Councils often just ignored them. Why should we make a council for those who abandoned the church with their errors? Since the first instant they embraced heresy, they were automatically heretic, and weren't anymore church members at all, even if they continued acting as if they were. Even the Popes were heretic at least since 1014 AD, yet they still claimed to belong to the Orthodox Church even until 1054 AD (and effectively exercised that ministry unworthily).
As for the matter of your faith: you must be a sectarian, some kind of Jehovah's Witness, since you are unequivocably trying to explain that the Church can't use Councils to confess the true faith. You evidently are heretic, as you confess that children merit suffering, tortures, death, damnation; you confess that a child willingly rejects and hates God even if he doesn't even know the difference between good and evil... you and your heresies have no interest in me, so I will ignore your posts until you don't specify which parasynagogue of Satan you are from.

In Christ, feeling death in my heart for your blindness,

Alex
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« Reply #156 on: July 29, 2009, 07:44:02 PM »

Kallistos Ware in the link provided by John:

"Jeremias, however, in his three Answers to the Tübingen theologians (dated 1576, 1579, 1581), adhered strictly to the traditional Orthodox position and showed no inclination to Protestantism...The Patriarch’s Answers are important as the first clear and authoritative critique of the doctrines of the Reformation from an Orthodox point of view."

Here is what Patriarch Jeremias said on the topic of original sin: 

Writing to the Lutherans in the late 1570's: "Your second article contains the assertion that every man is guilty of original sin.  We also affirm that this is, indeed, the truth."  -Augsburg and Constantinople by Mastrantonis p36.

Yet one more proof Orthodoxy traditionally subscribed to the concept of inherited guilt, just as Latins do. 

So we have the Council of Jerusalem in 1672 affirming the inherited guilt concept as well as the EP one hundred years before.  Not to mention the various Russians who neo-Orthodox like to throw out as under "Western Captivity." 

Let it be known to all thinking men and women here that the Orthodox Church taught unbaptized babies were damned.  Why would it do this?  Could it be that the Church believed what its own EP Jeremias clearly stated: that every man is guilty of original sin? 

Ialmisry: Despite the fact there was only one Patriarch involved in the important and legitimate 1672 Council, the Orthodox Church has an obligation to correct its error with a council equal or superior to 1672 and state plainly that at the very least unbaptized babies may not be damned, and thereby clarify that babies are not born with inherited guilt.  Even if this was to be done, there is no getting around the fact "inherited guilt" has been a strong teaching in the Orthodox Church. 

John: Good link to the intelligent Ware's book.

As for Alexander, I ought to ring your nerdy little neck for such rude comments cowardly sent behind the protection of your computer.  Grow up.

K



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« Reply #157 on: July 29, 2009, 08:10:24 PM »

Kallistos Ware in the link provided by John:

"Jeremias, however, in his three Answers to the Tübingen theologians (dated 1576, 1579, 1581), adhered strictly to the traditional Orthodox position and showed no inclination to Protestantism...The Patriarch’s Answers are important as the first clear and authoritative critique of the doctrines of the Reformation from an Orthodox point of view."

Here is what Patriarch Jeremias said on the topic of original sin: 

Writing to the Lutherans in the late 1570's: "Your second article contains the assertion that every man is guilty of original sin.  We also affirm that this is, indeed, the truth."  -Augsburg and Constantinople by Mastrantonis p36.

Yet one more proof Orthodoxy traditionally subscribed to the concept of inherited guilt, just as Latins do. 

So we have the Council of Jerusalem in 1672 affirming the inherited guilt concept as well as the EP one hundred years before.  Not to mention the various Russians who neo-Orthodox like to throw out as under "Western Captivity." 

Let it be known to all thinking men and women here that the Orthodox Church taught unbaptized babies were damned.  Why would it do this?  Could it be that the Church believed what its own EP Jeremias clearly stated: that every man is guilty of original sin? 

Ialmisry: Despite the fact there was only one Patriarch involved in the important and legitimate 1672 Council, the Orthodox Church has an obligation to correct its error with a council equal or superior to 1672 and state plainly that at the very least unbaptized babies may not be damned, and thereby clarify that babies are not born with inherited guilt.  Even if this was to be done, there is no getting around the fact "inherited guilt" has been a strong teaching in the Orthodox Church. 

John: Good link to the intelligent Ware's book.

As for Alexander, I ought to ring your nerdy little neck for such rude comments cowardly sent behind the protection of your computer.  Grow up.

K






Kaste,



I don't know how many times we have to say this, but we don't believe in "original guilt". You have to look at that local council in the context of eastern clergy being educated and learning their theology from the west, so they used western terminology at times. But in no way is "original guilt" Orthodox,..........nor is that local council a euceminical council. "Original guilt" is error........no if's and's or but's about it.

Also, just because some Orthodox may use Roman Catholic and Protestant terminoligy at times, doesn't mean they mean it in the same way........or understand it the same way a Roman Catholic or a Protestant understands those same words. You said we have an obligation to do something, but we have no obligation......we don't have to do anything.........we know what the faith teaches, so we know what the correct interpretation is..........so there is no need for anything.


Also, why are you afraid to mention your protestant denomination?








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« Reply #158 on: July 29, 2009, 11:57:46 PM »

Kallistos Ware in the link provided by John:

"Jeremias, however, in his three Answers to the Tübingen theologians (dated 1576, 1579, 1581), adhered strictly to the traditional Orthodox position and showed no inclination to Protestantism...The Patriarch’s Answers are important as the first clear and authoritative critique of the doctrines of the Reformation from an Orthodox point of view."

Here is what Patriarch Jeremias said on the topic of original sin: 

Writing to the Lutherans in the late 1570's: "Your second article contains the assertion that every man is guilty of original sin.  We also affirm that this is, indeed, the truth."  -Augsburg and Constantinople by Mastrantonis p36.

For one thing, check your translation:
(Tibbs - Patriarch Jeremias II, the Tübingen Lutherans, and the Greek Version of the Augsburg Confession)
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The Greek Version of the Augsburg Confession

Professor Ernst Benz of Marburg was the first to call attention to this curious document.  His publication of Wittenberg und Byzanz, "Die grechische Übersetzung der Confession Augustana aus dem Jahre 1559" in 1949 is used as the basis for much contemporary research on the topic.  Georges Florovsky cites Benz as calling this Greek Version of the Augsburg Confession, or Augustana Graeca "a document of very peculiar character."[28]  As a significant part of his Doctoral Dissertation entitled "The Augustana Graeca and the Correspondence Between the Tübingen Lutherans and Patriarch Jeremias: Scripture and Tradition in Theological Methodology" Wayne James Jorgensen translated the Augustana Graeca into English and calls it, "The greatest variata of them all."    Jorgensen describes the Augustana Graeca as:

...in a class by itself, markedly departing from all Latin or German versions of the Confession and far surpassing them in the scope and purpose of its changes.   It addresses itself to readers who are not immediately familiar with the issues which resulted in the fashioning of this statement of faith and to whom its basic concepts and formations must be repeated and frequently emphasized


Purpose of the Augustana Graeca

Two significant questions immediately come to mind about this unusual document.  Who translated it and what purpose did its translator intend it to serve?  Given the reign of humanism in the academic world at that time, it is not at all exceptional that a Lutheran would be inspired to produce a Greek translation as the symbol of his faith.   The translation of the Augustana Graeca is attributed to Paul Dolscius,[30] a renowned Greek scholar.  His dedication only appears as a preface in the rare 1559 edition of the Augsburg Confession in which he states "I have rendered it in a very simple way... as a translator should, adding nothing of his own to that which he has undertaken to translate into a foreign language."[31]  But Jorgensen's studies reveal that this is simply not true.  In response to Dolscius' preface he notes:

Yet every word of the Augustana Graeca belies this remark!  The preface is surely a red herring, serving to camouflage the real purpose of the enterprise.  It is not a "simple" translation; nor is it intended for intra-eccleiastical purpose in Germany.  The author is in fact adding much of his own..... The document is clearly an ecumenical overture to readers who are unfamiliar with the religious developments of sixteenth-century Germany."...

Nuances in the Text of the Augustana Graeca

As stated previously, the Greek rendering of the Augsburg Confession is not merely a translation but a revision, no doubt in the interest of building a bridge between the East and West.  Terms of the Greek Liturgy were employed not only to make matters clear to the Greek mind, according to Korte, but very often to remove theological obstacles which hindered union....Chapter Two "on Original Sin" is two brief paragraphs in the Confession and became over a page in the Augustana Graeca...Lutheran theologian, Berthold Korte, believes that adapting the language to suite the reader was not only acceptable, but necessary, in order to counter the vast differences between the Greek and Roman mind:

In all justice to the translator of the Augsburg Confession into Greek, we must see the great difficulties he encountered.  These involved differences in language and piety.  The Latin language was formed by the Roman mind, its laws, and its institutions, and these Roman conceptions were transferred to the religious realm.[39]

With regard to soteriological ideas, the translators either knew that the Lutheran conception of justification as a forensic act of God was hardly comprehensible to the East, or that the East fully understood this Augustinian-based view, and simply disagreed.  In either event, Korte believes that the Lutheran ideas were diluted in order to be more palatable to the reader in the East:

Besides, Eastern piety circled around the three divine attributes, life, love, and light.  Sin and forgiveness of sin were only secondary, contributory factors.  Man is saved by the healing process of divine grace.  Christ is the great physician whose healing power causes man to be saved.  To meet this Eastern conception something had to be done: justification had to be sacrificed in favor of reconciliation.

According to Travis, clearly, the intent of the Greek version of the Augsburg Confession was to connect Lutheran doctrine with patristic tradition, which remained a constant and deep conviction throughout the correspondence.
http://www.stpaulsirvine.org/html/lutheran.htm

The English translation of the Augustana Graeca (words only in the Greek in bold, words with a significant difference from the Latin underlined):
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They also teach that, after the transgression of Adam­ the first-formed, all men from father and mother are born sinners by nature, that is, without fear of God, without trust in Him, but with concupiscence and disorder, and that they are clothed in innate worthlessness and wretchedness. In consent and in accordance with the opinion and teaching of the holy Fathers and all the orthodox and pious in the Church, they state that the innate worthlessness and wretchedness of­ ­­human nature is the liability and subjection to eternal damnation for all men, through the transgression of the first-formed, in which every man by nature is born a child of the wrath of God, subject to and under the power of eternal death; moreover, they teach that the corruption of human nature is implanted in everyone from Adam, and it comprises the deprivation or the deficiency of original justice, and of integrity or of obedience, and concupiscence.

This deficiency is a terrible blindness, and ignorance of God, an obscuring or overshadowing of divine illumination and knowledge of God, which would have radiated in human nature were it still undamaged and unstumbled, and it is a distortion of rectitude: that is, a corruption of the unchangeable and uninterrupted obedience, and of the undis­guised and unmixed and unsurpassed love of God, and of things similar to these impressed by God on the untarnished human nature before the fall. They say that this affliction or wickedness of the corrupted human nature is truly sin, sentencing to eternal death all men up to the present who have not been born again through baptism and the Holy Spirit.

Thinking and teaching in this way, they condemn the so-called Pelagians and the others, moreover, who, to the dishonour of the redemption and the good works of Christ, deny that wretchedness and worthlessness from birth is sin, and they contend and say that man by his own powers of the soul can fulfil the law of God and be justified before Him.
http://www.acta-et-scriptura.dk/Engl-transl.htm
http://www.acta-et-scriptura.dk/acta6.htm
http://www.acta-et-scriptura.dk/acta7.htm

Compare the original Augsburg Confession:
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Art. II.—Of Original Sin.
Also they teach that, after Adam's fall, all men begotten after the common course of nature are born with sin; that is, without the fear of God, without trust in him, and with fleshly appetite; and that this disease, or original fault, is truly sin, condemning and bringing eternal death now also upon all that are not born again by baptism and the Holy Spirit.
 
(Item docent, quod post lapsum Adæ omnes homines, secundum naturam propagati, nascantur cum peccato, hoc est, sine metu Dei, sine fiducia erga Deum, et cum concupiscentia; quodque hic morbus, seu vitium originis vere sit peccatum, damnans et afferens nunc quoque æternam mortem his, qui non renascuntur per Baptismum et Spiritum Sanctum.) 

They condemn the Pelagians, and others, who deny this original fault to be sin indeed; and who, so as to lessen the glory of the merits and benefits of Christ, argue that a man may, by the strength of his own reason, be justified before God.

(Damnant Pelagianos et alios, qui vitium originis negant esse peccatum, et, ut extenuent gloriam meriti et beneficiorum Christi,disputant hominem propriis viribus rationis coram Deo justificari posse).
http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/creeds3.iii.ii.html

The Vatican condemned this article at Augsburg:
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In the second article we approve their Confession, in common with the Catholic
 Church, that the fault of origin is truly sin, condemning and bringing eternal
 death upon those who are not born again by baptism and the Holy Ghost. For in
 this they properly condemn the Pelagians, both modern and ancient, who have
 been long since condemned by the Church. But the declaration of the article,
 that Original Sin is that men are born without the fear of God and without
 trust in God, is to be entirely rejected, since it is manifest to every
 Christian that to be without the fear of God and without trust in God is
 rather the actual guilt of an adult than the offence of a recently-born
 infant, which does not possess as yet the full use of reason, as the Lord says
 "Your children which had no knowledge between good and evil," Deut 1:39.
 Moreover, the declaration is also rejected whereby they call the fault of
 origin concupiscence, if they mean thereby that concupiscence is a sin that
 remains sin in a child even after baptism. For the Apostolic See has already
 condemned two articles of Martin Luther concerning sin remaining in a child
 after baptism, and concerning the fomes of sin hindering a soul from entering
 the kingdom of heaven. But if, according to the opinion of St Augustine, they
 call the vice of origin concupiscence, which in baptism ceases to be sin, this
 ought to be accepted, since indeed according to the declaration of St. Paul,
 we are all born children of wrath (Eph. 2:3), and in Adam we all have sinned
 (Rom.5:12).
http://www.ctsfw.edu/etext/boc/ap/confut/conf02.asc

To the defense of this Article, Melanchthon, who may have been responsible for the Augustana Graeca, writes:
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Article II (I): Of Original Sin.
1] The Second Article, Of Original Sin, the adversaries approve, but in such a way that they, nevertheless, censure the definition of original sin, which we incidentally gave. Here, immediately at the very threshold, His Imperial Majesty will discover that the writers of the Confutation were deficient not only in judgment, but also in candor. For whereas we, with a simple mind, desired, in passing, to recount those things which original sin embraces, these men, by framing an invidious interpretation, artfully distort a proposition that has in it nothing which of itself is wrong. Thus they say: "To be without the fear of God, to be without faith, is actual guilt;" and therefore they deny that it is original guilt.

2] It is quite evident that such subtilties have originated in the schools, not in the council of the Emperor. But although this sophistry can be very easily refuted; yet, in order that all good men may understand that we teach in this matter nothing that is absurd, we ask first of all that the German Confession be examined. This will free us from the suspicion of novelty. For there it is written: Weiter wird gelehrt, dass nach dem Fall Adams alle Menschen, so natuerlich geboren werden, in Suenden empfangen und geboren werden, das ist, dass sie alle von Mutterleibe an voll boeser Lueste und Neigung sind, keine wahre Gottesfurcht, keinen wahren Glauben an Gott von Natur haben koennen. [It is further taught that since the Fall of Adam all men who are naturally born are conceived and born in sin, i.e., that they all, from their mother's womb, are full of evil desire and inclination, and can have by nature no true fear of God, no true faith in God.] 3] This passage testifies that we deny to those propagated according to carnal nature not only the acts, but also the power or gifts of producing fear and trust in God. For we say that those thus born have concupiscence, and cannot produce true fear and trust in God. What is there here with which fault can be found? To good men, we think, indeed, that we have exculpated ourselves sufficiently. For in this sense the Latin description denies to nature [even to innocent infants] the power, i.e., it denies the gifts and energy by which to produce fear and trust in God, and, in adults [over and above this innate evil disposition of the heart, also] the acts, so that, when we mention concupiscence, we understand not only the acts or fruits, but the constant inclination of the nature [the evil inclination within, which does not cease as long as we are not born anew through the Spirit and faith].

4] But hereafter we will show more fully that our description agrees with the usual and ancient definition. For we must first show our design in preferring to employ these words in this place. In their schools the adversaries confess that "the material," as they call it, "of original sin is concupiscence." Wherefore, in framing the definition, this should not have been passed by, especially at this time, when some are philosophizing concerning it in a manner unbecoming teachers of religion [are speaking concerning this innate, wicked desire more after the manner of heathen from philosophy than according to God's Word, or Holy Scripture].

5] For some contend that original sin is not a depravity or corruption in the nature of man, but only servitude, or a condition of mortality [not an innate evil nature, but only a blemish or imposed load, or burden], which those propagated from Adam bear because of the guilt of another [namely, Adam's sin], and without any depravity of their own. Besides, they add that no one is condemned to eternal death on account of original sin, just as those who are born of a bond-woman are slaves, and bear this condition without any natural blemish, but because of the calamity of their mother [while, of themselves, they are born without fault, like other men: thus original sin is not an innate evil, but a defect and burden which we bear since Adam, but we are not on that account personally in sin and inherited disgrace]. 6] To show that this impious opinion is displeasing to us, we made mention of "concupiscence," and, with the best intention, have termed and explained it as "diseases," that "the nature of men is born corrupt and full of faults" [not a part of man, but the entire person with its entire nature is born in sin as with a hereditary disease]

7] Nor, indeed, have we only made use of the term concupiscence, but we have also said that "the fear of God and faith are wanting." This we have added with the following design: The scholastic teachers also, not sufficiently understanding the definition of original sin, which they have received from the Fathers, extenuate the sin of origin. They contend concerning the fomes [or evil inclination] that it is a quality of [blemish in the] body, and, with their usual folly, ask whether this quality be derived from the contagion of the apple or from the breath of the serpent, and whether it be increased by remedies. With such questions they have suppressed the main point. 8] Therefore, when they speak of the sin of origin, they do not mention the more serious faults of human nature, to wit, ignorance of God, contempt for God, being destitute of fear and confidence in God, hatred of God's judgment, flight from God [as from a tyrant] when He judges, anger toward God, despair of grace, putting one's trust in present things [money, property, friends], etc. These diseases, which are in the highest degree contrary to the Law of God, the scholastics do not notice; yea, to human nature they meanwhile ascribe unimpaired strength for loving God above all things, and for fulfilling God's commandments according to the substance of the acts, nor do they see 9] that they are saying things that are contradictory to one another. For what else is the being able in one's own strength to love God above all things, and to fulfil His commandments, than to have original righteousness [to be a new creature in Paradise, entirely pure and holy]? 10] But if human nature have such strength as to be able of itself to love God above all things as the scholastics confidently affirm, what will original sin be? For what will there be need of the grace of Christ if we can be justified by our own righteousness [powers]? For what will there be need of the Holy Ghost if human strength can by itself 11] love God above all things, and fulfil God's commandments? Who does not see what preposterous thoughts our adversaries entertain? The lighter diseases in the nature of man they acknowledge, the more severe they do not acknowledge; and yet of these, Scripture everywhere admonishes us, and the prophets constantly complain ( as the 13th Psalm, and some other psalms say, Ps. 14:1-3,5:9,140:3,36:1 ), namely, of carnal security, of the contempt of God, of hatred toward God, and of similar faults born with us. [For Scripture clearly says that all these things are not blown at us, but born with us.] 12] But after the scholastics mingled with Christian doctrine philosophy concerning the perfection of nature [light of reason], and ascribed to the free will and the acts springing therefrom more than was sufficient, and taught that men are justified before God by philosophic or civil righteousness (which we also confess to be subject to reason, and, in a measure, within our power), they could not see the inner 13] uncleanness of the nature of men. For this cannot be judged except from the Word of God, of which the scholastics, in their discussions, do not frequently treat.

14] These were the reasons why, in the description of original sin, we made mention of concupiscence also, and denied to man's natural strength the fear of God and trust in Him. For we wished to indicate that original sin contains also these diseases, namely, ignorance of God, contempt for God, the being destitute of the fear of God and trust in Him, inability to love God. These are the chief faults of human nature, conflicting especially with the first table of the Decalog.

15] Neither have we said anything new. The ancient definition understood aright expresses precisely the same thing when it says: "Original sin is the absence of original righteousness" [a lack of the first purity and righteousness in Paradise]. But what is righteousness? Here the scholastics wrangle about dialectic questions; they do not explain what original righteousness is. 16] Now in the Scriptures, righteousness comprises not only the second table of the Decalog [regarding good works in serving our fellow-man], but the first also, which teaches concerning 17] the fear of God, concerning faith, concerning the love of God. Therefore original righteousness was to embrace not only an even temperament of the bodily qualities [perfect health and, in all respects, pure blood, unimpaired powers of the body, as they contend], but also these gifts, namely, a quite certain knowledge of God, fear of God, confidence in God, or certainly 18] the rectitude and power to yield these affections [but the greatest feature in that noble first creature was a bright light in the heart to know God and His work, etc.]. And Scripture testifies to this, when it says, Gen. 1:27, that man was fashioned in the image and likeness of God. What else is this than that there were embodied in man such wisdom and righteousness as apprehended God, and in which God was reflected, i.e., to man there were given the gifts of the knowledge of God, the fear of God, confidence in God, and the like? 19] For thus Irenaeus and Ambrose interpret the likeness to God, the latter of whom not only says many things to this effect, but especially declares: That soul is not, therefore, in the image of God, in which God is not at all times. 20] And Paul shows in the Epistles to the Ephesians 5:9, and Colossians 3:10, that the image of God is the knowledge of God, righteousness, and truth. 21] Nor does Longobard fear to say that original righteousness is the very likeness to God which God implanted in man. 22] We recount the opinions of the ancients, which in no way interfere with Augustine's interpretation of the image.

23] Therefore the ancient definition, when it says that sin is the lack of righteousness, not only denies obedience with respect to man's lower powers [that man is not only corrupt in his body and its meanest and lowest faculties], but also denies the knowledge of God, confidence in God, the fear and love of God or certainly the power to produce these affections [the light in the heart which creates a love and desire for these matters]. For even the theologians themselves teach in their schools that these are not produced without certain gifts and the aid of grace. In order that the matter may be understood, we term these very gifts the knowledge of God, and fear and confidence in God. From these facts it appears that the ancient definition says precisely the same thing that we say, denying fear and confidence toward God, to wit, not only the acts, but also the gifts and power to produce these acts [that we have no good heart toward God, which truly loves God, not only that we are unable to do or achieve any perfectly good work].

24] Of the same import is the definition which occurs in the writings of Augustine, who is accustomed to define original sin as concupiscence [wicked desire]. For he means that when righteousness had been lost, concupiscence came in its place. For inasmuch as diseased nature cannot fear and love God and believe God, it seeks and loves carnal things. God's judgment it either contemns, when at ease, or hates, when thoroughly terrified. Thus Augustine includes both the defect and 25] the vicious habit which has come in its place. Nor indeed is concupiscence only a corruption of the qualities of the body, but also, in the higher powers, a vicious turning to carnal things. Nor do those persons see what they say who ascribe to man at the same time concupiscence that is not entirely destroyed by the Holy Ghost, and love to God above all things.

26] We, therefore, have been right in expressing, in our description of original sin, both namely, these defects: the not being able to believe God, the not being able to fear and love God; and, likewise: the having concupiscence, which seeks carnal things contrary to God's Word, i.e., seeks not only the pleasure of the body, but also carnal wisdom and righteousness, and, contemning God, trusts in these as good things. 27] Nor only the ancients [like Augustine and others], but also the more recent [teachers and scholastics], at least the wiser ones among them, teach that original sin is at the same time truly these, namely, the defects which I have recounted, and concupiscence. For Thomas says thus: Original sin comprehends the loss of original righteousness, and with this an inordinate disposition of the parts of the soul; whence it is not pure loss, but a corrupt habit [something positive]. 28] And Bonaventura: When the question is asked, What is original sin? the correct answer is, that it is immoderate [unchecked] concupiscence. The correct answer is also, that it is want of the righteousness that is due. And in one of these replies the other is included. 29] The same is the opinion of Hugo, when he says that original sin is ignorance in the mind and concupiscence in the flesh. For he thereby indicates that when we are born, we bring with us ignorance of God, unbelief, distrust, contempt, and hatred of God. 30] For when he mentions ignorance, he includes these. And these opinions [even of the most recent teachers] also agree with Scripture. For Paul sometimes expressly calls it a defect [a lack of divine light], as 1 Cor. 2:14: The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God. 31] In another place, Rom. 7:5, he calls it concupiscence, working in our members to bring forth fruit unto death. We could cite more passages relating to both parts; but in regard to a manifest fact there is no need of testimonies. And the intelligent reader will readily be able to decide that to be without the fear of God and without faith are more than actual guilt. For they are abiding defects in our unrenewed nature.

32] In reference to original sin we therefore hold nothing differing either from Scripture or from the Church catholic, but cleanse from corruptions and restore to light most important declarations of Scripture and of the Fathers, that had been covered over by the sophistical controversies of modern theologians. For it is manifest from the subject itself that modern theologians have not noticed what the Fathers meant when they spake of defect [lack of original righteousness]. 33] But the knowledge of original sin is necessary. For the magnitude of the grace of Christ cannot be understood [no one can heartily long and have a desire for Christ, for the inexpressibly great treasure of divine favor and grace which the Gospel offers], unless our diseases be recognized. [As Christ says Matt. 9:12; Mark 2:17: They that are whole need not a physician.] The entire righteousness of man is mere hypocrisy [and abomination] before God, unless we acknowledge that our heart is naturally 34] destitute of love, fear, and confidence in God [that we are miserable sinners who are in disgrace with God]. For this reason the prophet Jeremiah 31:19, says: After that I was instructed, I smote upon my thigh. Likewise Ps. 116:11: I said in my haste, All men are liars, i.e., not thinking aright concerning God.

35] Here our adversaries inveigh against Luther also because he wrote that "Original sin remains after Baptism." They add that this article was justly condemned by Leo X. But His Imperial Majesty will find on this point a manifest slander. For our adversaries know in what sense Luther intended this remark that original sin remains after Baptism. He always wrote thus, namely, that Baptism removes the guilt of original sin, although the material, as they call it, of the sin, i.e., concupiscence, remains. He also added in reference to the material that the Holy Ghost, given through Baptism, begins to mortify the concupiscence, and creates new movements [a new light, a new sense and spirit] in man. 36] In the same-manner, Augustine also speaks, who says: Sin is remitted in Baptism, not in such a manner that it no longer exists, but so that it is not imputed. Here he confesses openly that sin exists, i.e., that it remains, although it is not imputed. And this judgment was so agreeable to those who succeeded him that it was recited also in the decrees. Also against Julian, Augustine says: The Law, which is in the members, has been annulled by spiritual regeneration, and remains in the mortal flesh. It has been annulled because the guilt has been remitted in the Sacrament, by which believers are born again; but it remains, because it produces desires, against which believers contend. 37] Our adversaries know that Luther believes and teaches thus, and while they cannot reject the matter they nevertheless pervert his words, in order by this artifice to crush an innocent man.

38] But they contend that concupiscence is a penalty, and not a sin [a burden and imposed penalty, and is not such a sin as is subject to death and condemnation]. Luther maintains that it is a sin. It has been said above that Augustine defines original sin as concupiscence. If there be anything disadvantageous in this opinion, 39] let them quarrel with Augustine. Besides Paul says, Rom. 7:7. 23: I had not known lust (concupiscence), except the Law had said, Thou shalt not covet. Likewise: I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. These testimonies can be overthrown by no sophistry. [All devils, all men cannot overthrow them.] 40] For they clearly call concupiscence sin, which, nevertheless, is not imputed to those who are in Christ, although by nature it is a matter worthy of death where it is not forgiven. 41] Thus, beyond all controversy, the Fathers believe. For Augustine, in a long discussion, refutes the opinion of those who thought that concupiscence in man is not a fault, but an adiaphoron, as color of the body or ill health is said to be an adiaphoron [as to have a black or a white body is neither good nor evil].

42] But if the adversaries will contend that the fomes [or evil inclination] is an adiaphoron, not only many passages of Scripture, but simply the entire Church [and all the Fathers] will contradict them. For [even if not entire consent, but only the inclination and desire be there] who ever dared to say that these matters, even though perfect agreement could not be attained, were adiaphora, namely, to doubt concerning God's wrath, concerning God's grace, concerning God's Word, to be angry at the judgments of God, to be provoked because God does not at once deliver one from afflictions, to murmur because the wicked enjoy a better fortune than the good, to be urged on by wrath, 43] lust, the desire for glory, wealth, etc.? And yet godly men acknowledge these in themselves, as appears in the Psalms and the prophets. [For all tried, Christian hearts know, alas! that these evils are wrapped up in man's skin, namely to esteem money, goods, and all other matters more highly than God, and to spend our lives in security; again, that after the manner of our carnal security we always imagine that God's wrath against sin is not as serious and great as it verily is. Again, that we murmur against the doing and will of God, when He does not succor us speedily in our tribulations, and arranges our affairs to please us. Again, we experience every day that it hurts us to see wicked people in good fortune in this world, as David and all the saints have complained. Over and above this, all men feel that their hearts are easily inflamed, now with ambition, now with anger and wrath, now with lewdness.] But in the schools they transferred hither from philosophy notions entirely different, that, because of passions, we are neither good nor evil, we are neither deserving of praise nor blame. Likewise, that nothing is sin, unless it be voluntary [inner desires and thoughts are not sins, if I do not altogether consent thereto]. These notions were expressed among philosophers with respect to civil righteousness, and not with respect to God's judgment. [For there it is true, as the jurists say, L. cogitationis, thoughts are exempt from custom and punishment. But God searches the hearts; in God's court and judgment it is different.] With no greater prudence they add also other notions, such as, that [God's creature and] nature is not [cannot in itself be] evil. In its proper place we do not censure this; but it is not right to twist it into an extenuation of original sin. And, nevertheless, these notions are read in the works of scholastics, who inappropriately mingle philosophy or civil doctrine concerning ethics with the Gospel. 44] Nor were these matters only disputed in the schools, but, as is usually the case, were carried from the schools to the people. And these persuasions [godless, erroneous, dangerous, harmful teachings] prevailed, and nourished confidence in human strength, and suppressed the knowledge of Christ's grace. 45] Therefore, Luther wishing to declare the magnitude of original sin and of human infirmity [what a grievous mortal guilt original sin is in the sight of God], taught that these remnants of original sin [after Baptism] are not, by their own nature, adiaphora in man, but that, for their non-imputation, they need the grace of Christ and, likewise for their mortification, the Holy Ghost.

46] Although the scholastics extenuate both sin and punishment when they teach that man, by his own strength, can fulfil the commandments of God; in Genesis the punishment, imposed on account of original sin, is described otherwise. For there human nature is subjected not only to death and other bodily evils, but also to the kingdom of the devil. For there, Gen. 3:15, this fearful sentence is proclaimed: I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed. 47] The defects and the concupiscence are punishments and sins. Death and other bodily evils, and the dominion of the devil, are properly punishments. For human nature has been delivered into slavery and is held captive by the devil, who infatuates it with wicked opinions and errors, and 48] impels it to sins of every kind. But just as the devil cannot be conquered except by the aid of Christ, so by our own strength we cannot free ourselves 49] from this slavery. Even the history of the world shows how great is the power of the devil's kingdom. The world is full of blasphemies against God and of wicked opinions, and the devil keeps entangled in these bands those who are wise and 50] righteous [many hypocrites who appear holy] in the sight of the world. In other persons grosser vices manifest themselves. But since Christ was given to us to remove both these sins and these punishments, and to destroy the kingdom of the devil, sin and death, it will not be possible to recognize the benefits of Christ unless we understand our evils. For this reason our preachers have diligently taught concerning these subjects, and have delivered nothing that is new, but have set forth Holy Scripture and the judgments of the holy Fathers.

51] We think that this will satisfy His Imperial Majesty concerning the puerile and trivial sophistry with which the adversaries have perverted our article. For we know that we believe aright and in harmony with the Church catholic of Christ. But if the adversaries will renew this controversy, there will be no want among us of those who will reply and defend the truth. For in this case our adversaries, to a great extent, do not understand what they say. They often speak what is contradictory, and neither explain correctly and logically that which is essential to [i.e., that which is or is not properly of the essence of] original sin, nor what they call defects. But we have been unwilling at this place to examine their contests with any very great subtlety. We have thought it worth while only to recite, in customary and well-known words, the belief of the holy Fathers, which we also follow.
http://www.bookofconcord.org/defense_2_originalsin.php

Then's there's the response of EP Jeremias II:
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There are very few direct critical remarks - more exactly only concerning "faith and good works" and very decisive about "tradition". In the concluding remarks of the document the orthodox opinion is clear and unambiguous expressed: "All here said, my beloved ones, is - as you very well know - based upon the inspired Holy Scripture, according to the interpretation of the Fathers of the Church, explanation and sound teachings. We are not allowed to trust our own interpretation and understand and interpret the words from the inspired scripture without consent with the Fathers of the Church, who are recognized by the holy synods, inspired by the Holy Spirit ... " In most cases the criticism is formulated indirectly as an invitation to further discussions not going into details about the Lutheran formulation - but by formulating in full the Orthodox attitude to the questions.
http://www.acta-et-scriptura.dk/the_orthodox_church_and_the_luth.htm#The%20Orthodox

Quote
Yet one more proof Orthodoxy traditionally subscribed to the concept of inherited guilt, just as Latins do. 


LOL.  Can you provide "proof" of that that predates the late Lutherans?  I mean, we have 15 centuries of Tradition before the Augsburg Confession.

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So we have the Council of Jerusalem in 1672 affirming the inherited guilt concept as well as the EP one hundred years before.  Not to mention the various Russians who neo-Orthodox like to throw out as under "Western Captivity."
 

Hmmm. Can you quote any Orthodox Theologian not in the Western Captivity?  You seem to want to quote only those in bondage to post 1517 Western discourse.  Better yet, and for the Orthodox POV, can you quote one not talking to heretics outside the Church, but those talking to the inside, without reference to the plague from the West?

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Let it be known to all thinking men and women here that the Orthodox Church taught unbaptized babies were damned.  Why would it do this?  Could it be that the Church believed what its own EP Jeremias clearly stated: that every man is guilty of original sin?
 

Unfortunately I do not have my copy of Mastrontonis handy, and can't get my hands on the Greek origin.  But maybe you can post more of where your quote comes from, the paragraph at least?  Since you, for instance, keep refering to origianl guilt in the Synod of Jerusalem, and since anyone can look at the text and see its not there, I'm suspicious I'm afraid.

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Ialmisry: Despite the fact there was only one Patriarch involved in the important and legitimate 1672 Council, the Orthodox Church has an obligation to correct its error with a council equal or superior to 1672 and state plainly that at the very least unbaptized babies may not be damned, and thereby clarify that babies are not born with inherited guilt.  Even if this was to be done, there is no getting around the fact "inherited guilt" has been a strong teaching in the Orthodox Church.
 

Being outside the Church, you are in no position to dictate what the Orthodox can, should or must do. Nor assign importance to her Councils, nor legitimize them, in particular, as in the case in point, the Church has manifestly placed less importance on the Confession of Dositheus than you do.

If "inherited guilt" (which as I pointed out, is not in Dositheos' confession) were such a strong teaching, we should expect to be able to find it before 1517, and in Orthodox Fathers teaching to the Orthodox, and not confined to polemic and apologetic works aimed at heresies from the patriarchate of Rome, or from an invisible church.
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« Reply #159 on: July 30, 2009, 07:34:42 AM »

Listen to me, Kaste:
it's you who are hiding behind your computer. In fact, you say you belong to the only true Church, and claim it is not the Orthodox Church, but you refuse to state what denomination you are from; evidently, either you're not so sure of the infallibility of your church, or you're just here to try oyr patience. Since I'm not a saint, my patience as already extinguished since your second or third post.
On the contrary, I'm not hiding behind my computer. Everybody on this forum knows I live in Bergamo, Northern Italy, where I was born 25 years ago of RC parents. They all know my TRUE name of baptism is Alessandro. They all know that I'm living the Roman Catholic Church after studying all Christian denominations for 3-4 years and understanding that the Orthodox Church is the true one. They also know I'm fighting against my family to persuade them of the sincerity of my conversion and of the beauty of my faith. If you want, I could even PM you my family name, my photos, my address, and even my home seen from Google Earth if you would like. I have definitely nothing to hide, while you are crypting yourself behind the image of a person who wants to disturb a free conversation on a very specific subject: The concept of Ancestral Sin in Orthodoxy vs Original Sin in Catholicism. So, if you're neither RC nor EO, what are you here to do then? I don't see how your interventions can contribute this thread if you're not Roman Catholic, and it also seems that, as ialmisry showed in his last post, you also pick and choose your sources accurately and of course voluntarily to discriminate the Orthodox position.

I tendentially respect the other people, even when I don't understand their faiths: but nobody can tell me what I should or shouldn't believe in my own faith except for my brothers and sisters in Christ who know it better. Since I've been here for a while (many months, I mean) I know for sure that none of my Orthodox brothers and sisters subscribe to the Western theory of inherited guilt in infants, despite the citations you have quoted here. I could list a lot of names of my friends here who would support me. Ialmisry has proven to be on my side in this thread, for example.

In Christ,   Alex

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« Reply #160 on: July 30, 2009, 11:58:00 AM »

Ialmisry:

From your Melanchthon quote #35:

"35] Here our adversaries inveigh against Luther also because he wrote that "Original sin remains after Baptism." They add that this article was justly condemned by Leo X. But His Imperial Majesty will find on this point a manifest slander. For our adversaries know in what sense Luther intended this remark that original sin remains after Baptism. He always wrote thus, namely, that Baptism removes the guilt of original sin, although the material, as they call it, of the sin, i.e., concupiscence, remains. He also added in reference to the material that the Holy Ghost, given through Baptism, begins to mortify the concupiscence, and creates new movements [a new light, a new sense and spirit] in man. 36] In the same-manner, Augustine also speaks, who says: Sin is remitted in Baptism, not in such a manner that it no longer exists, but so that it is not imputed. Here he confesses openly that sin exists, i.e., that it remains, although it is not imputed. And this judgment was so agreeable to those who succeeded him that it was recited also in the decrees. Also against Julian, Augustine says: The Law, which is in the members, has been annulled by spiritual regeneration, and remains in the mortal flesh. It has been annulled because the guilt has been remitted in the Sacrament, by which believers are born again; but it remains, because it produces desires, against which believers contend. 37] Our adversaries know that Luther believes and teaches thus, and while they cannot reject the matter they nevertheless pervert his words, in order by this artifice to crush an innocent man."

1)  This is what the Lutherans taught and believed, along with the Roman Catholics, and Orthodox.
2)  EP Jeremiah II affirmed this in his reply as I quoted.

Attention to all reading this thread:  Please note how I have not been given an answer on why unbaptized babies would be damned. 

Mark these two items:

1)  You don't damn unbaptized babies unless they are guilty of something. 
2)  Ialmisry, what do you think baptism removes, when even in your quote it is admitted concupiscience, mortality (in short all the things the Neo-Orthodox currently say original sin is) still remain. 

Here is Mastrantonis's full paragraph concerning EP Jeremiah's reply on original sin:

""Your second article contains the assertion that every man is guilty of original sin.  We also affirm that this, indeed, the truth.  The Psalmist says in the 50th Psalm: "Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity and in sin did my mother conceive me."  And the Lord says in the Gospels concerning the purging away of such original sin: "Unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of heaven.""

So I have shown 2 solid quotes affirming Orthodox held to the traditional concept of inherited guilt.  The Russians taught this as well.  I ask you to show me 2 solid quotes (Council or EP) that show the Orthodox to have not held to the concept of inherited guilt

Just because Meyendorff, Schmemen and other Neo-Orthodox strive to peddle Orthodoxy as inherently different than the "West", doesn't mean anyone here in the this forum must follow that path.  To his credit, Kallistos Ware is more cautious to deny inherited guilt is a part of Orthodoxy. 

K



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« Reply #161 on: July 30, 2009, 01:37:09 PM »

Ialmisry:

From your Melanchthon quote #35:

"35] Here our adversaries inveigh against Luther also because he wrote that "Original sin remains after Baptism." They add that this article was justly condemned by Leo X. But His Imperial Majesty will find on this point a manifest slander. For our adversaries know in what sense Luther intended this remark that original sin remains after Baptism. He always wrote thus, namely, that Baptism removes the guilt of original sin, although the material, as they call it, of the sin, i.e., concupiscence, remains. He also added in reference to the material that the Holy Ghost, given through Baptism, begins to mortify the concupiscence, and creates new movements [a new light, a new sense and spirit] in man. 36] In the same-manner, Augustine also speaks, who says: Sin is remitted in Baptism, not in such a manner that it no longer exists, but so that it is not imputed. Here he confesses openly that sin exists, i.e., that it remains, although it is not imputed. And this judgment was so agreeable to those who succeeded him that it was recited also in the decrees. Also against Julian, Augustine says: The Law, which is in the members, has been annulled by spiritual regeneration, and remains in the mortal flesh. It has been annulled because the guilt has been remitted in the Sacrament, by which believers are born again; but it remains, because it produces desires, against which believers contend. 37] Our adversaries know that Luther believes and teaches thus, and while they cannot reject the matter they nevertheless pervert his words, in order by this artifice to crush an innocent man."

1)  This is what the Lutherans taught and believed, along with the Roman Catholics, and Orthodox.

If that were so, then Melanchthon wouldn't have needed the lenghty defense to the Vatican, and the Greek doctoring of the text for the EP, now would he?  btw, Melanthon also doctored the Augsburg Confession so that John Calvin could sign.  If you can read Latin (I'm not in the mood to translate right now p. 170):
http://books.google.com/books?id=D3krAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA202&dq=Kolde+Die+augsburgische+konfession

Btw, in case you didn't notice, Melanthon's words (which I've put in larger print) contradict your cherished Confession of Dositheos:
Quote
And it may not be said, that any sin is not washed away through Baptism, which may have been previously committed; but to remain, though not imputed. For that were indeed the height of impiety, and a denial, rather than a confession of piety. Yea, forsooth, all sin existing, or committed before Baptism, is blotted out, and is to be regarded as never existing or committed.


Quote
2)  EP Jeremiah II affirmed this in his reply as I quoted.

As the Greek version of the Augsburg confession doesn't say men are guilty of original sin, or mention original guilt, you quote is left dangling by this thread of yours.  I recall the book have notes.  Any on this quote (as I said, my copy is not handy, being in storage).

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Attention to all reading this thread:  Please note how I have not been given an answer on why unbaptized babies would be damned. 


yes, you have:
Why would your 1672 Council say unbaptized babies are damned? 

That has already been posted:
Iamisery:
No, Orthodox did accept the concept of inherited guilt.  Please pay attention to the quote.

I do. It doesn't say anything about inherited guilt.  Nowhere in the article you quote:
Quote
...And, therefore, it is necessary even for infants, since they also are subject to original sin, and without Baptism are not able to obtain its remission. Which the Lord shewed when he said, not of some only, but simply and absolutely,...And forasmuch as infants are men, and as such need salvation; needing salvation, they need also Baptism. And those that are not regenerated, since they have not received the remission of hereditary sin, are, of necessity, subject to eternal punishment, and consequently cannot without Baptism be saved; so that even infants ought, of necessity, to be baptised. Moreover, infants are saved, as is said in Matthew; {Matthew 19:12} but he that is not baptised is not saved. And consequently even infants must of necessity be baptised...And the effects of Baptism are, to speak concisely, firstly, the remission of the hereditary transgression, and of any sins whatsoever which the baptised may have committed. Secondly, it delivereth him from the eternal punishment, to which he was liable, as well for original sin, as for mortal sins he may have individually committed. Thirdly, it giveth to such immortality; for in justifying them from past sins, it maketh them temples of God. And it may not be said, that any sin is not washed away through Baptism, which may have been previously committed; but to remain, though not imputed. For that were indeed the height of impiety, and a denial, rather than a confession of piety. Yea, forsooth, all sin existing, or committed before Baptism, is blotted out, and is to be regarded as never existing or committed. For the forms of Baptism, and on either hand all the words that precede and that perfect Baptism, do indicate a perfect cleansing. And the same thing even the very names of Baptism do signify. For if Baptism be by the Spirit and by fire, {Matthew 3:11} it is manifest that it is in all a perfect cleansing; for the Spirit cleanseth perfectly. If it be light, {Hebrews 6:4} it dispelleth the darkness. If it be regeneration, {Titus 3:5} old things are passed away. And what are these except sins? If the baptised putteth off the old man, {Colossians 3:9} then sin also. If he putteth on Christ, {Galatians 3:27} then in effect he becometh free from sin through Baptism. For God is far from sinners. This Paul also teacheth more plainly, saying: “As through one [man] we, being many, were made sinners, so through one [are we made] righteous.” {Romans 5:19} And if righteous, then free from sin. For it is not possible for life and death to be in the same [person]. If Christ truly died, then remission of sin through the Spirit is true also. Hence it is evident that all who are baptised and fall asleep while babes are undoubtedly saved, being predestinated through the death of Christ. Forasmuch as they are without any sin; — without that common [to all], because delivered therefrom by the Divine laver, and without any of their own, because as babes they are incapable of committing sin; — and consequently are saved. Moreover, Baptism imparteth an indelible character, as doth also the Priesthood. For as it is impossible for any one to receive twice the same order of the Priesthood, so it is impossible for any once rightly baptised, to be again baptised, although he should fall even into myriads of sins, or even into actual apostacy from the Faith. For when he is willing to return unto the Lord, he receiveth again through the Mystery of Penance the adoption of a son, which he had lost.
http://catholicity.elcore.net/ConfessionOfDositheus.html

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Mark these two items:

1)  You don't damn unbaptized babies unless they are guilty of something.

They are missing something, being linked to the Old Adam but not the New Adam.

Quote
2)  Ialmisry, what do you think baptism removes, when even in your quote it is admitted concupiscience, mortality (in short all the things the Neo-Orthodox currently say original sin is) still remain.
 

Neo-Orthodox. LOL. You and Mardukm should get together.

Since all the quotes in the last post (except for the brief assement of EP Jeremias "There are very few direct critical remarks - more exactly only concerning "faith and good works" and very decisive about "tradition". In the concluding remarks of the document the orthodox opinion is clear and unambiguous expressed: "All here said, my beloved ones, is - as you very well know - based upon the inspired Holy Scripture, according to the interpretation of the Fathers of the Church, explanation and sound teachings. We are not allowed to trust our own interpretation and understand and interpret the words from the inspired scripture without consent with the Fathers of the Church, who are recognized by the holy synods, inspired by the Holy Spirit ... " In most cases the criticism is formulated indirectly as an invitation to further discussions not going into details about the Lutheran formulation - but by formulating in full the Orthodox attitude to the questions.") was a quote from a Lutheran, who have no import for the Orthodox, I'm not sure why you would be asking me to defend the Lutheran position.

As to your other question, I remember going into some detail on this (I think of the IC which spawned this one).  In short sin/death (same thing) is remitted.

I can guess your next question, but I will let you ask it anyway.


Quote
Here is Mastrantonis's full paragraph concerning EP Jeremiah's reply on original sin:

""Your second article contains the assertion that every man is guilty of original sin.  We also affirm that this, indeed, the truth.  The Psalmist says in the 50th Psalm: "Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity and in sin did my mother conceive me."  And the Lord says in the Gospels concerning the purging away of such original sin: "Unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of heaven.""

Seems rather brief to make much of. Having the original Greek would be nice, as we know the Augusta Graeca doesn't include such an assertion (but one make the case, which you obviously are, that it is implied) that everyone is "guilty" of original sin.  Again, my Mastrontonis is not available, so I have to admit I am at a disadvantage here.

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So I have shown 2 solid quotes affirming Orthodox held to the traditional concept of inherited guilt. 


LOL.  You have a confession against heretics which doesn't have inherited guilt in it, and a response to a heretic creed, said response claiming an assertion not in said creed, and the clause in question teaching inherited guilt only if read that way (my suspicion is the traditional concept of the transmission of ancestral sin is what is refered to, but I'd have to have Jeremias correspondance to affirm that).

Yeah, rock solid. Roll Eyes

Why haven't you come up with any pre-1517 quotes.  They should be plentiful. After all, we are the Church of Tradition.


Quote
The Russians taught this as well.

Really?  Can you show me it in Mohyla's catechism (also approved in its corrected form by the Synod of Jerusalem).

Quote
I ask you to show me 2 solid quotes (Council or EP) that show the Orthodox to have not held to the concept of inherited guilt.
 

The Synod of Jerusalem is not Vatican I, nor is Jeremias' correspondence Pastor Aeternus.  And why the EP?  The bishop of Moscow can do just as well, and in fact did (Longer Catechism of St. Philoret):
Quote
164.  What came of Adam's sin?

The curse, and death.

165.  What is the curse?

The condemnation of sin by God's just judgment, and the evil which from sin came upon the earth for the punishment of men. God said to Adam, Cursed is the ground for thy sake. Gen. iii. 17.

166.  What is the death which came from the sin of Adam?

It is twofold: bodily, when the body loses the soul which quickened it; and spiritual, when the soul loses the grace of God, which quickened it with the higher and spiritual life.

167.  Can the soul, then, die as well as the body?

It can die, but not so as the body. The body, when it dies, loses sense, and is dissolved; the soul, when it dies by sin, loses spiritual light, joy, and happiness, but is not dissolved nor annihilated, but remains in a state of darkness, anguish, and suffering.

168.  Why did not the first man only die, and not all, as now?

Because all have come of Adam since his infection by sin, and all sin themselves. As from an infected source there naturally flows an infected stream, so from a father infected with sin, and consequently mortal, there naturally proceeds a posterity infected like him with sin, and like him mortal.

169.  How is this spoken of in holy Scripture?

By one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin, and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned. Rom. v. 12.

http://www.pravoslavieto.com/docs/eng/Orthodox_Catechism_of_Philaret.htm#ii.xv.iii.i.p41

Read St. John Cassian.

Quote
Just because Meyendorff, Schmemen and other Neo-Orthodox strive to peddle Orthodoxy as inherently different than the "West", doesn't mean anyone here in the this forum must follow that path.  To his credit, Kallistos Ware is more cautious to deny inherited guilt is a part of Orthodoxy. 

Bishop Kallistos seems to be reverting to his Anglican roots, in more ways than one.

The West had your Council of Orange:
http://www.reformed.org/documents/index.html?mainframe=http://www.reformed.org/documents/canons_of_orange.html
which condemns us, as has been discussed.
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20612.msg324821.html#msg324821
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,21719.0.html
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,11327.0.html
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,18639.msg274027.html#msg274027
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20580.msg307661.html#msg307661

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« Reply #162 on: July 30, 2009, 02:12:37 PM »

Ialmisry:

I asked you why the Orthodox Church taught that unbaptized babies are damned.

You responded by simply quoting my Council of Jerusalem's statement and adding that "inherited guilt" is not mentioned.

Do you honestly think this is a fair answer? 

My point is that there is a reason the Orthodox Church taught that unbaptized babies are damned.  When we scrape past all the back-and-forth we find that the reason why the Orthodox Church thought unbaptized babies were damned was because a baby, as innocent as it is, is still born (or so the Orthodox Church taught) with something in which it is considered guilty or damnable.  This is the bottom line.  Whatever that damnable/guilty thing is, it is said to be removed at baptism.  The Latin and Protestant churches affirm this and so did the Orthodox.  Perhaps not in exactly the same words, but the idea is still clearly there (that this damnable thing is essentially the baby carring some kind of guilt) beyond all reasonable doubt. 

I believe any unbiased person would admit this, and it seems odd to argue over this unless the agenda is to further justify separation from the West.  I gave you 2 solid quotes from Councils and Ecumenical Patriarchs.  Philaret's quote you provided does not negate the traditional concept of inherited guilt.  So I think to be constructive about this, you and I must find quotes before 1517 since anything afterwards you may simply throw out as being "Western influenced" which I still think is silly and an insult to the competency of the Orthodox Church from 1517 to ~1850.

So I will await a quote from a Patriarch or Council that condemns the so-called "Western" concept of inherited guilt prior to 1517.  I will search along with you to find one because this would be important evidence.  Interesting though, you would think Ss. Photius or Mark of Ephesus would have mentioned it as a major difference and justification for not joining Rome (and maybe they did...we will see).

K

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« Reply #163 on: July 30, 2009, 03:40:51 PM »

Ialmisry:

I asked you why the Orthodox Church taught that unbaptized babies are damned.

You responded by simply quoting my Council of Jerusalem's statement and adding that "inherited guilt" is not mentioned.

Do you honestly think this is a fair answer?

Since you claim the Synod of Jerusalem (btw, we usaully meand the Council of Jerusalem in Acts 15 when we use that term) is a "solid quote" on inherited guilt, when it is not mentioned, I guess so.

Quote
My point is that there is a reason the Orthodox Church taught that unbaptized babies are damned.  When we scrape past all the back-and-forth we find that the reason why the Orthodox Church thought unbaptized babies were damned was because a baby, as innocent as it is, is still born (or so the Orthodox Church taught) with something in which it is considered guilty or damnable.
 

No, the Orthodox Church taught-and teaches-that he is born terminally ill.

St. Symeon the New Theologian:
Quote
And so let no one invent excuses for his sins and say that we, by virtue of the transgression of Adam, are entirely subject to the action of the devil and are dragged by force into sin. They who think and speak thus consider that the dispensation of the Incarnation of our Master and Savior Jesus Christ was useless and in vain. Such an opinion is the opinion of heretics and not of the Orthodox. For what other reason did Christ descend and become Incarnate, and for what else did He suffer if not in order to loose the condemnation which proceeded from sin, and to deliver our race from slavery to the devil and from the activity in us of this our enemy? This is true autonomy: in no way to be subject to someone else. We are all born sinners from our forefather Adam who sinned; we are all criminals from a criminal, slaves of sin from a slave of sin, subject to the curse and death from him who was subject to the curse and death.

And because of Adam who received the action of the cunning devil, and by his counsel was moved to sin, and enslaved himself to him and lost his autonomy--we also, as his children, are subject to the action and the compulsory dominion of the devil and are his slaves. But our Lord came down from the heavens, was Incarnate and became man like us in everything except sin, in order to annihilate sin. He was conceived and born so as to sanctify the conception and birth of men. He was raised up and grew little by little so as to bless every age of life. He began to preach at the age of thirty, having become a full-grown man, so as to teach us not to jump out of line and go before those who are greater than us in mind and virtue, that is, are more intelligent and virtuous than we, especially if we are still young and not perfect in understanding and virtue. He preserved all the commandments of His God and Father so as to loose every transgression and to deliver us criminals from condemnation. He became a slave, took the form of a slave, in order to raise us, the slaves of the devil, once more into the condition of masters and to make us masters and possessors over the devil himself, our former tyrant.
http://www.stjohndc.org/Russian/homilies/e_HOMSYBAN.HTM

And a nice summary by the maligned Fr. John Meyendorff of blessed memory:
Quote
Now, in Greek patristic thought, only this free, personal mind can commit sin and incur the concomitant “guilt”—a point made particularly clear by Maximus the Confessor in his distinction between “natural will” and “gnomic will.” Human nature as God’s creature always exercises its dynamic properties (which together constitute the “natural will”—a created dynamism) in accordance with the divine will, which creates it. But when the human person, or hypostasis, by rebelling against both God and nature misuses its freedom, it can distort the “natural will” and thus corrupt nature itself. It is able to do so because it possesses freedom, or “gnomic will,” which is capable of orienting man toward the good and of “imitating God” (”God alone is good by nature,” writes Maximus, “and only God’s imitator is good by his gnome“); it is also capable of sin because “our salvation depends on our will.” But sin is always a personal act and never an act of nature. Patriarch Photius even goes so far as to say, referring to Western doctrines, that the belief in a “sin of nature” is a heresy.

From these basic ideas about the personal character of sin, it is evident that the rebellion of Adam and Eve against God could be conceived only as their personal sin; there would be no place, then, in such an anthropology for the concept of inherited guilt, or for a “sin of nature,” although it admits that human nature incurs the consequences of Adam’s sin.

The Greek patristic understanding of man never denies the unity of mankind or replaces it with a radical individualism. The Pauline doctrine of the two Adams (”As in Adam all men die, so also in Christ all are brought to life” [1 Co 15:22]) as well as the Platonic concept of the ideal man leads Gregory of Nyssa to understand Genesis 1:27—”God created man in His own image”—to refer to the creation of mankind as a whole. It is obvious therefore that the sin of Adam must also be related to all men, just as salvation brought by Christ is salvation for all mankind; but neither original sin nor salvation can be realized in an individual’s life without involving his personal and free responsibility.

The scriptural text, which played a decisive role in the polemics between Augustine and the Pelagians, is found in Romans 5:12 where Paul speaking of Adam writes, “As sin came into the world through one man and through sin and death, so death spreads to all men because all men have sinned [eph ho pantes hemarton]” In this passage there is a major issue of translation. The last four Greek words were translated in Latin as in quo omnes peccaverunt (”in whom [i.e., in Adam] all men have sinned”), and this translation was used in the West to justify the doctrine of guilt inherited from Adam and spread to his descendants. But such a meaning cannot be drawn from the original Greek—the text read, of course, by the Byzantines. The form eph ho—a contraction of epi with the relative pronoun ho—can be translated as “because,” a meaning accepted by most modern scholars of all confessional backgrounds. Such a translation renders Paul’s thought to mean that death, which is “the wages of sin” (Rm 6:23) for Adam, is also the punishment applied to those who like him sin. It presupposed a cosmic significance of the sin of Adam, but did not say that his descendants are “guilty” as he was unless they also sinned as he did.

A number of Byzantine authors, including Photius, understood the eph ho to mean “because” and saw nothing in the Pauline text beyond a moral similarity between Adam and other sinners in death being the normal retribution for sin. But there is also the consensus of the majority of Eastern Fathers, who interpret Romans 5:12 in close connection with 1 Corinthians 15:22—between Adam and his descendants there is a solidarity in death just as there is a solidarity in life between the risen Lord and the baptized. This interpretation comes obviously from the literal, grammatical meaning of Romans 5:12. Eph ho, if it means “because,” is a neuter pronoun; but it can also be masculine referring to the immediately preceding substantive thanatos (”death”). The sentence then may have a meaning, which seems improbable to a reader trained in Augustine, but which is indeed the meaning which most Greek Fathers accepted: “As sin came into the world through one man and death through sin, so death spread to all men; and because of death, all men have sinned …”

Mortality, or “corruption,” or simply death (understood in a personalized sense), has indeed been viewed since Christian antiquity as a cosmic disease, which holds humanity under its sway, both spiritually and physically, and is controlled by the one who is “the murderer from the beginning” (Jn 8:44). It is this death, which makes sin inevitable and in this sense “corrupts” nature. (pp. 143-145)
Byzantine Theology [1974]
http://pontifications.wordpress.com/original-sin/

Is Fr. Romanides "Neo-Orthodox?"
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To share in the love of God, without any concern for one's self, is also to share in the life and truth of God. Love, life and truth in God are one and can be found only in God. The turning away of love from God and neighbor toward the self is breaking of communion with the life and truth of God, which cannot be separated from His love. The breaking of this communion with God can be consummated only in death, because nothing created can continue indefinitely to exist of itself.[ 215 ] Thus, by the transgression of the first man, the principle of "sin (the devil) entered into the world and through sin death, and so death passed upon all men..."[ 216 ] Not only humanity, but all of creation has become subjected to death and corruption by the devil.[ 217 ] Because man is inseparably a part of, and in constant communion with, creation and is linked through procreation to the whole historical process of humanity, the fall of creation through on man automatically involves the fall and corruption of all men. It is through death and corruption that all of humanity and creation is held captive to the devil and involved in sin, because it is by death that man falls short of his original destiny, which was to love God and neighbor without concern for the self. Man does not die because he is guilty for the sin of Adam.[ 218 St. John Chrysostom, Migne, P.G.t. 60, col. 391-692; Theophylactos, Migne, P.G.t. 124, c. 404-405] He becomes a sinner because he is yoked to the power of the devil through death and its consequences.[ 219 St. Cyrill of Alexandria, Migne, P.G.t. 74, c. 781-785, and especially c. 788-789; Theodoretos of Cyrus, Migne, P.G.t. 66, c. 800]...

From what has been observed, the famous expression, eph'ho pantes hemarton,[ 228 ] can be safely interpreted as modifying the word, thanatos, which preceeds it, and which grammatically is the only word which fits the context. Eph'ho as a reference to Adam is both grammatically and exegetically impossible. Such an interpretation was first introduced by Origen, who obviously used it with a purpose in mind, because he believed in the pre-existence of all souls whereby he could easily say that all sinned in Adam. The interpretation of eph'ho as "because" was first introduced into the East by Photius,[ 229 Amphilochia, heroteseis, 84, Migne, P.G.t. 101, c. 553-556] who claims that there are two interpretations prevalent--Adam and thanatos--but he would interpret it dioti (because). He bases his argument on a false interpretation of II Corinthians 5:4 by interpreting eph'ho, here again, as dioti. But here it is quite clear that eph'ho refers to skensi (eph'ho skenei ou thelomen ekdysasthai). Photius is interpreting Paul within the framework of natural moral law and is seeking to justify the death of all men by personal guilt. He claims that all men die because they sin by following in the footsteps of Adam.[ 230 Ecumenius, extracts from Photius, Migne, P.G.t. 118, c. 418 ] However, neither he nor any of the Eastern Fathers accepts the teaching that all men are made guilty for the sin of Adam.
http://www.romanity.org/htm/rom.10.en.original_sin_according_to_st._paul.01.htm

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This is the bottom line.  Whatever that damnable/guilty thing is, it is said to be removed at baptism.  The Latin and Protestant churches affirm this and so did the Orthodox.  Perhaps not in exactly the same words, but the idea is still clearly there (that this damnable thing is essentially the baby carring some kind of guilt) beyond all reasonable doubt.
 

Yes, I know you Augustinians see all sorts of things that are not there.  That's the bottom line.

It's the remission of sins. Not the commutation nor pardon.  We, nor the Orthodox Fathers, want any part of your guilt trip.

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I believe any unbiased person would admit this, and it seems odd to argue over this unless the agenda is to further justify separation from the West.
and seperation from the "visible head" of the West.  I've never heard a Protestant who accused us of a need to "justify seperation from the West."  Accused of being pagans, idolaters,....but never a care about geography.

You chose Augustine at the Council of Orange.  We stayed with St. John Cassian and the Orthodox phronema.

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I gave you 2 solid quotes from Councils and Ecumenical Patriarchs.


And if we were Ultramontanists, and the EP was the "Eastern Pope," that might, if true, mean something.

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Philaret's quote you provided does not negate the traditional concept of inherited guilt.


Since he is an Orthodox pastor teaching the Orthodox Faithful, he does not deal with the twisted teaching of inherited guilt.

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So I think to be constructive about this, you and I must find quotes before 1517

Going to be hard, as it is hard to find quotes on heresies that had not fully reared their ugly head yet.

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since anything afterwards you may simply throw out as being "Western influenced" which I still think is silly and an insult to the competency of the Orthodox Church from 1517 to ~1850.

Just stating the sorry facts: your Confession of Dositheus makes a point of accepted the CORRECTED Catechism of St. Movila (who had studied in the West, and instituted Latin in the seminary at Kiev.  In fact, his Catechism was written in Latin, and influenced by your Roman Catechism), not the original.

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So I will await a quote from a Patriarch or Council that condemns the so-called "Western" concept of inherited guilt prior to 1517.
 

For that you would need a Prophet.

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I will search along with you to find one because this would be important evidence.  Interesting though, you would think Ss. Photius or Mark of Ephesus would have mentioned it as a major difference and justification for not joining Rome (and maybe they did...we will see).

No, the filioque more than suffices.

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« Reply #164 on: July 30, 2009, 10:10:16 PM »

Ladies and Gentlemen,

It has been interesting discussing with many of you here.  Nothing further is necessary from my end.  All who value approaching contentious matters with open-mind, ask yourselves, 'Why would the Orthodox Church damn unbaptized babies?'.  There must be some inherited "stain" or "mark" of sin on infants.  The West calls this inherited guilt.  The East did as well at various times.  Even modern Orthodox admit there is this "stain".  Some here call it "terminally ill". 

People of this forum, do not let yourselves be bullied or overwhelmed by those of many words.  Determine on your own if the effect and essence are essentially the same.  Baptism removes this "guilt" or "stain" because without that "guilt" or "stain" lifted, we cannot enter the Kingdom of Heaven.  Same essence.  Same effect.   

If there truly was the difference the Neo-Orthodox claim exists, the honest inquirer would expect to see Eastern councils or Patriarchs strongly condemning Augustine's so called invention of "inherited guilt." 

They do not because they essentially agreed with Augustine on this one.  In fact, as I have shown, they have done the opposite.

As promised I will now tell you what Church I identify with.  It is the Kingdom of God.  The body of all believers of Jesus Christ.  Baptised in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  Do not forget the simple faith of the thief on the cross all you who are quick to condemn others. 

May the visible Church of God grow into perfection and reach out more to those already walking the path of God. 
Godspeed to all followers of Christ!

K
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« Reply #165 on: July 30, 2009, 11:42:33 PM »

Ladies and Gentlemen,

It has been interesting discussing with many of you here.  Nothing further is necessary from my end. 

yes, we can see you are wise in your own eyes.

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All who value approaching contentious matters with open-mind, ask yourselves, 'Why would the Orthodox Church damn unbaptized babies?'

The Orthodox Church is in the saving business, not the damning business.

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There must be some inherited "stain" or "mark" of sin on infants. 

Do an experiment.  Pull the plug out of your TV. See if it works.  See if it works unless you put the plug in a live socket.

The TV doesn't work not because it is guilty of anything, but because it has been cut off from the source of its power, its life if you will.


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The West calls this inherited guilt. 

That it does, but many there dispute that now.


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The East did as well at various times. 

Not in their right mind they didn't. And you have yet to provide an example that predates your "Reformation/Counter-Reformation."

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Even modern Orthodox admit there is this "stain".  Some here call it "terminally ill".

We are accused of being Semi-Pelagians, not Pelagians (a Western heresy btw), remember?

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People of this forum, do not let yourselves be bullied or overwhelmed by those of many words.  Determine on your own if the effect and essence are essentially the same.  Baptism removes this "guilt" or "stain" because without that "guilt" or "stain" lifted, we cannot enter the Kingdom of Heaven.  Same essence.  Same effect.
   

Some people cannot distinguish between lightening and a lightening bug.

Through or from the Son: what's the difference?  According to the Fathers, a lot.

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If there truly was the difference the Neo-Orthodox claim exists, the honest inquirer would expect to see Eastern councils or Patriarchs strongly condemning Augustine's so called invention of "inherited guilt."
 

LOL.  You assume Augustine was on their radar.  His works weren't translated into Greek into the 14th century, i.e. after the Augustinians had thrown in their lot with the Ultramontanists and the perverters of the Creed and were accordingly expelled from the Church.

But as to your allegation on St. Augustine, since you mentioned St. Photios:
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The first major theologian of the Orthodox church to come to grips with the filioque was Saint Photios who also deals with the person of Saint Augustine. He makes the case that a saint who erred on a doctrine that was instituted subsequent to his death is not guilty of heresy and that the holiness of the person was not lessened. In the case of Augustine, Saint Photios suspects that his writings were distorted. Photios asks, "How can one be certain that after the lapse of all these years the writings have not been distorted?" [1] Saint Photios insists that even if the writings are authentic and the Latins quote these writings to support their false teachings they do a disservice to these fathers. Photios states, "Read through Ambrose or Augustine or whatever father you choose:  which of them wished to affirm anything contrary to the Master's voice?" And further on, he says:

"If those fathers who taught such opinions did not alter or change the correct statements, then you who teach your word as a dogma ­again, this is another slander against your fathers ­bring your own stubbornness of opinion into the teachings of these men." [2]

Photios argues that although these fathers were endowed with holiness, they were at the same time human and not exempt from slipping into error. And so Photios advises the Latins to leave the fathers, Ambrose and Augustine, alone. He states:

"Though they were otherwise arrayed with the noblest reflections, they were human. If they slipped and fell into error, therefore, by some negligence or oversight, then we should not gainsay or admonish them. But what is this to you?" [3]

Although Augustine and Ambrose use the filioque , they did not intend to include it in the Creed. The addition of the filioque to the Creed is offensive to the Greek Orthodox. Photios makes this clear in the following statement:

"For they were not, even in the slightest degree, participants in those things in which you abound. They were rather adorned with many examples of virtue and piety and thus professed your teaching either through ignorance or oversight which was never imposed as a dogma." [4]

Photios contends that the fathers, including Ambrose and Augustine, did not teach error, but even if they did, they were human, and no one, being human, is exempt from error. He states, "for they were all men ( anthropoi ) and human, and no one composed of dust and ephemeral nature can avoid some step of defilement." [5]

Photios insists that even though these holy men, Ambrose and Augustine, may have taught the erroneous doctrine of the filioque , they are but a small minority. The majority of the fathers, the consensus patrum , is on the side of the true doctrine and that we must follow. Photios states:

"If the great Ambrose and Augustine and Jerome and some others who are of the same opinion and on the same level and happen to have the great reputation of virtue and illustrious life, teach among others, that the Holy Spirit proceeds also from the Son, this does not lessen their importance for the Church." [6]

Photios continues in the same paragraph, arguing that, it is primarily evident to say to them (Latins) that, if ten or even twenty such fathers spoke in such a manner, thousands ( myrioi ) of fathers did not say such a thing. He asks, "Who then insults the fathers?" And, "Is it not those who limit the piety of those few fathers in a few words they spoke and place then in contradiction to the synods and prefer the few to the numberless fathers who defend the true doctrine?" He continues to question the Latins thusly, "Who is the offender ( huvristes ) of the holy ( ieron ) Augustine and Jerome and Ambrose? Is it not he who compels them to come into conflict with the common Master and Teacher? Or, is it he who does not do such a thing, but demands ( axion ) to follow the statutes of the Master?" [7]

St. Photios suggests to leave these Latin fathers alone, whose doctrines are in conflict with the decision of the Scriptures and the Ecumenical Councils, because by appealing to them to support the errors of the Latins, they uncover the errors of these pious men. The appropriate respect for these holy men is to be silent about their weaknesses. [8]

Furthermore, Photios suggests that one should sympathize with these fathers because they theologized at a time of historical perplexity that led them to errors on some doctrines. So, Photios maintains that he who dies, is not present to defend himself and no one else can undertake his defense. And for that reason, no one of sound mind would make an accusation against him ( kategoros ). [9]

Photios argues that at the common Council of 879-880, the legates of the Old Rome agreed with the theologians of the New Rome, that the Holy Spirit proceeds only from the Father. At that council all agreed on the Holy Creed and the Ecumenical Councils and sealed with their signatures the faith that the Holy Spirit proceeds only from the Father; and that the Old Rome in the person of Pope John through his vicars ( topoteritai ) were in communion with Photios and the Church of Constantinople because they were in agreement in their theology. [10]

It is evident from the foregoing that Photios did not exclude Augustine from the list of saints and fathers even though he accepts that he, as a human being, erred in some doctrinal issues. This is my discovery from the several references made to Augustine in the writing of Saint Photios ­ holiness and virtue are permanent in spite of the human frailty of falling into error. Augustine, in the eyes of Saint Photios and the Byzantines, remains one of the fathers of the Latin West.

and since you brought up St. Mark of Ephesus earlier:
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In the debate between the Greeks and the Latins, numerous times the authority of Augustine came up. The adamant Greek Orthodox theologian, Mark Eugenikos, used the work of Augustine to support his views. In regard to the errors of Augustine, he tried to place him in the best possible light, following the example of Saint Photios. He makes reference to Saint Gregory of Nyssa who agreed with the Origenist doctrines. He says "it would be better to give them over to silence, and not at all compel us, for the sake of our own defence, to bring them out into the open."

and you wanted an EP, here's one:
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Saint Gennadios Scholarios
Also attending the Council at Ferrara-Florence was a theologian of great stature, Gennadios Scholarios. He knew Latin and Latin theology. He had translated several treatises of Thomas Aquinas into Greek for the benefit of his compatriots. He spent a great deal of time studying and writing on Augustine in the debate on the filioque .

Scholarios approaches Saint Augustine and all the other fathers as individuals who must be in concord with the Church's dogmas and teachings. He states, "we believe in the Church; they (the Latins) in Augustine and Jerome." The Church holds to our Lord's dogmas and teachings that were commonly given by the holy apostles and councils. [14]

The Church has its own standards and law for sanctifying a person. The saints are guided and governed by the Holy Spirit, especially those who have advanced in virtue and holiness. This guidance the Holy Spirit of the saint does not mean that they are one. Saints can have their own thoughts that may be contrary to the teaching of God, as their actions may be also, because no one is without error or sin ( hamartema ). [15]

On this basis, that even saints may err, Scholarios strengthened his argument against the Latins who based their false doctrines of the filioque on the validity and holiness of Augustine. Scholarios makes his case as follows:

"But they state that the blessed Augustine says these things. But we believe neither in Augustine nor in Damascene but in the Church which the canonical Scriptures confirm and the common Synods of the faithful commend, the Church of Christ." [16]

Another example he gives is Gregory of Nyssa who erred on the doctrine of eschatology and yet is a saint of the Church. [17]

In all this discussion on "blessed Augustine," Scholarios does not renounce the holiness and the teaching value of Augustine. In fact he anathematizes those who deny his saintliness. He says: "if anyone does not believe and call Augustine saint and blessed, he is anathema." [18]

In making the point, Scholarios argues that the doctrines of the western theologians must be judged according to Eastern Christian Orthodox standards. This is because of the clarity of the Greek language. He gives three arguments in defence of the Eastern Christian positions as being the true ones: that Greek is more broad and flexible than Latin as well as clearer in meaning. And, of course, the Greek is the source of the Latin language. He gives references to Augustine, Athanasios, and Gregory the Theologian who state that Latin is much narrower and that is the cause of the schism between East and West.

The second reason is the formulation of dogma is clearly stated in the Greek language. [19] The eastern fathers and teachers formulated the dogmas with great care because they struggled against the heretical doctrines. For this reason, it was necessary for them to articulate the faith with great precision in order not to give the heretics the excuse to attack them for their lack of clarity and vagueness. [20]

The third reason he gives is that it prevailed in the Latin language to express itself in universal and general terms ( katholikoterais kai genidoterais lexesi ), whereas in the East, the Fathers use specific and precise names ( idikoterois onomasi ) in articulating the Christian doctrines. [21]

Scholarios blames Augustine for his notorious philosophical approach to revelation. It was the Manichean influence that Augustine underwent during his pre-Christian involvement with that heresy. His pagan and Manichean training remained with him all his life. In fact, Scholarios says "Lord deliver us from the Augustinian dialectic." [26]

Scholarios accepts that Augustine believed in the faith of the Church and confirmed the Constantinopolitan Creed, [27] in spite of the fact that he erred as an individual human being. [28] This does not take away from his holiness. For Scholarios, Augustine is "blessed" as well as a "wise" person who deserves all such praises and honors. [29] He is very critical of the theology of Augustine because he feels that he has not shaken off the influence he underwent in his pagan Greek philosophical training before his conversion to Christianity.

And your friend Patriarch Dositheus:
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The prominent seventeenth-century Greek Orthodox theologian, Dositheos, Patriarch of Jerusalem, contends that the works of Saint Augustine were tampered with and his doctrines distorted. For that reason the Orthodox do not accept them without caution. But all those works that agree with Orthodoxy are very useful. Dositheos himself uses "blessed" Augustine to support his own views of Orthodox doctrines.

All of the above from "Saint Augustine in the Greek Orthodox Tradition."
http://www.goarch.org/ourfaith/ourfaith8153

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They do not because they essentially agreed with Augustine on this one.  In fact, as I have shown, they have done the opposite.

What you have done is overkill over two quotes in polemics with the Augustinians, one which not only does not mention "original guilt" but also contradicts the basis of your other "quote."

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As promised I will now tell you what Church I identify with.  It is the Kingdom of God.

As always, you promise much, say more, tell nothing.

Since the Orthodox Church is the Kingdom of God on earth, and you are not claiming membership, how do you identify with it? OH, yes.  Invisible Church. Roll Eyes

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The body of all believers of Jesus Christ.  Baptised in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

by the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Orthodox Church.

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Do not forget the simple faith of the thief on the cross all you who are quick to condemn others. 


Do not forget that He Who said "Today you will be with Me in Paradise" also said "Who rejects you rejects Me" and "whoever does not gather scatters."

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May the visible Church of God grow into perfection and reach out more to those already walking the path of God. 
Godspeed to all followers of Christ!

K
umbaya!
« Last Edit: July 30, 2009, 11:44:21 PM by ialmisry » Logged

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« Reply #166 on: July 31, 2009, 12:42:34 AM »

Ialmisry:

So I will await a quote from a Patriarch or Council that condemns the so-called "Western" concept of inherited guilt prior to 1517. 

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Thus, according to the Fathers, our present condition is the result of a freely-willed choice, the natural consequences of the disobedience of Adam and Eve, the penalty for failure to heed God's warning that death, indeed, will be the catastrophic outcome of eating the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. It might occur to some, however, that it is exceedingly cruel of God to condemn the entire human race for the sin of two individuals. Why, indeed, should we, who were not around at the time of Adam's transgression, have to pay the rather stiff penalty for something that we did not, of ourselves, do? Isn't this guilt by association?

The source of this moral problem is not God, of course, as the author of evil and death, for God is not such. "We must understand," writes St. Gregory Palamas, "that God 'did not make death' (Wisdom 1:13), whether of the body or of the soul. For when He first gave the command, He did not say, 'On the day you eat of it, die,' but 'In the day you eat of it, you will surely die' (Gen. 2:17). He did not say afterwards, 'return now to the earth,' but 'you shall return' (Gen. 3:19), foretelling in this way what would come to pass" (One Hundred Fifty Chapters). Neither is the source, explains St. Theophilos of Antioch, the tree of knowledge of good and evil. For it is not, he writes, "as if any evil existed in the tree of knowledge, but from the fact of his disobedience did man draw, as from a fountain, labor, grief and, at last, fell prey to death" (To Autolycus, II, 25).

The problem, rather, has to do with the nature of Divinely-mandated freedom and the autonomous functioning of the natural law of creation, directly pertaining to issues of heredity and genetics, being analogous to something which contemporary medicine would define as "fetal addiction syndrome" or "fetal AIDS syndrome." In such a case, a mother who carries a gene for hemophilia, for instance, will transmit it to her offspring by the biological laws of heredity, though the processes of meiosis and mitosis, by means of which cell division naturally occurs. Or, in a similar way, a mother addicted to either drugs or alcohol, or who is HIV-positive, by virtue of the fact that from the moment of conception she shares with the child in her womb both blood and other bodily fluids, will naturally transmit to her child what she herself carries in her own blood. We easily understand that in this case, the child that is in the womb of the mother, will, of course, without any movement of the will, without agreement or disagreement with the particular moral choices of the mother, and, importantly, without any guilt on his part, participate in the affliction of the mother ("Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me," Ps. 50[51].5). It is in this vein, indeed, that the Fathers explain the concept of what has become known in theology as "original sin."

St. Cyril of Alexandria, for instance, observes: "Since [Adam] produced children after falling into this state, we, his descendants, are corruptible as the issue of a corruptible source. It is in this sense that we are heirs of Adam's curse. Not that we are punished for having disobeyed God's commandment along with him, but that he became mortal and the curse of mortality was transmitted to his seed after him, offspring born of a mortal source . . . So corruption and death are the universal inheritance of Adam's transgression" (Doctrinal questions and answers, 6). Elsewhere, commenting on St. Paul's teaching, he explains: "Human nature became sick with sin. Because of the disobedience of one (that is, of Adam), the many became sinners; not because they transgressed together with Adam (for they were not there) but because they are of his nature, which entered under the dominion of sin . . . Human nature became ill and subject to corruption through the transgression of Adam, thus penetrating man's very passions" (On Romans 5.18).

Summarizing this patristic teaching, the Greek theologian John Karmiris writes that "the sin of the first man, together with all of its consequences and penalties, is transferred by means of natural heredity to the entire human race. Since every human being is a descendant of the first man, 'no one of us is free from the spot of sin, even if he should manage to live a completely sinless day.' . . . Original Sin not only constitutes 'an accident' of the soul; but its results, together with its penalties, are transplanted by natural heredity to the generations to come . . . And thus, from the one historical event of the first sin of the first-born man, came the present situation of sin being imparted, together with all of the consequences thereof, to all natural descendants of Adam."[1]

Held, in general, as Orthodox teaching by both Eastern and Western Fathers, the theological concept, or doctrine, of "original sin," as the Russian theologian Fr. Michael Pomazansky points out, "has great significance in the Christian world-view, because upon it rests a whole series of other dogmas."[2] As a distinct concept of Christian theology, however, it was first defined and introduced in the fifth century by Blessed Augustine, Bishop of Hippo Regius in Northern Africa.

Blessed Augustine developed his doctrine in the context of a rather hot polemical confrontation with the heretic Pelagius, who, fleeing Rome after its sack in 410 by Alaric, chieftain of the Western Goths, had the misfortune, together with some of his followers, to settle in Africa, where his preaching came under the intense scrutiny of the bishop of Hippo. Pelagius, who was not a theologian, but essentially an itinerant ascetic preacher and moralist, whose chief interest was in correcting the moral laxity of contemporary Christians, had the further misfortune of permitting a local lawyer named Coelestius, who was seeking ordination to the priesthood, to become his disciple and interpreter of his views. In the view of the Pelagians, the low level of morality and rampant moral laxity had its source not only in what they saw as the denial of individual moral responsibility in the teaching about the consequences of Adam's sin, but also in the definition of the clergy as an elite group in the church, which in their eyes permitted the laity to abjure their moral responsibilities and adopt unacceptably low standards of Christian living. Some time later, after Pelagius had already left for Palestine (where he had yet the further misfortune of running afoul of the hot-tempered Blessed Jerome, translator of the Bible into Latin), Coelestius and his followers began preaching and explicating the views of their teacher, and in the process questioned the practice of infant baptism, the efficacy of the Incarnation and redemptive death of Christ on the cross, and denied the inheritance of Adam's sin. While man does indeed follow Adam into death, they taught, man sins only by example, through imitation of Adam, not through an endemic, hereditary defect of his nature. Despite the facts of sin and death, man's nature nonetheless remains as he was originally created, innocent and pure, as was first-created Adam himself. Disease and death are thus not consequences of original sin, but are characteristic of human nature from creation.

Blessed Augustine very correctly noted the dangerous implications of this argument for Orthodox theology. The total dismissal of the concept of an original, systemic sin inherited from Adam and present in human nature by virtue of genetic heritage results not only in an overly high valuation of man's physical and spiritual capabilities apart from God, but more importantly, perhaps, places in doubt the entire economy of our salvation by Christ, by obviating such essential Christian doctrines as the Incarnation and Redemption.

It should be remembered that the Pelagian controversy, which originally sparked the theological debate, was essentially a Western, more specifically, a Northern African controversy, which only incidentally involved Palestine and the East.[3] While Pelagius himself died in obscurity some years after his condemnation by the Council of Carthage in 416 and the Local African Council of 418, and before the Council of Ephesus in 431, the theological controversy to which he involuntarily lent his name was to involve quite a few Latin Fathers, and was to have far-reaching effects on the formulation of doctrines of sin and grace, free will and predestination. Thus, the theological debate that arose out of these issues eventually was to involve, directly or indirectly, not only Blessed Augustine and Blessed Jerome, but also Augustine's disciples Caesarius of Arles and Prosper of Aquitaine, as well as John Cassian, Vincent of Lerins, Gennadius of Marseilles, Faustus of Riez, and Arnobius the Younger, not to mention the later "augustinians"[4] and scholastics, and eventually the Protestant Reformers as well.

Technically speaking, in their writings the Eastern Fathers and Orthodox theologians do not use the Latin term introduced by Blessed Augustine in his treatise "De Peccato originali," but instead translate this concept by means of two cognate terms in both Greek and Russian, namely, progoniki amartia (= pervorodnyi grekh in Russian) and to propatorikon amartima (= praroditel'skii grekh), which is properly translated "ancestral sin." These terms allow for a more careful nuancing of the various implications contained in the one Latin term.

In the East, then, the concept of original sin has come to mean, as Fr. Michael Pomazansky very succinctly defines it, "the sin of Adam, which was transmitted to his descendants and weighs upon them."[5] Or, as John Karmiris puts it in an expanded definition, original sin is " 'sin-sickness,' the sinful situation of human nature which deprived man of Divine Grace, and subjected him to death, to departure from the Divine life, [and] has been transmitted by means of natural heredity to all of the descendants of the first-born, along with the stigma, the consequences, the fruits of that Original Sin."[6] Indeed, Karmiris reminds us, "it was for this reason that the ancient Church instituted the Baptism of infants, specifically that they might be freed from the stigma of sin of their ancestors, although the infants possessed no guilt of 'actual sin.'"[7]

In the West, however, the concept of original sin is tied up with and all too often even confused with an equally Western concept of "original guilt." The misconceptions resulting from this Western theological ambivalence are daunting, obscuring, as they do, the divine potential in man. It is, in fact, the particular assumptions about guilt and punishment, about human nature in general, as well as the specific mode of transmission of original sin from generation to generation[8] that constitute the historical and theological differences in interpretations of the doctrine of original sin. We can see two different, perhaps even opposing, trends develop with respect to these assumptions.

St. Anastasius of Sinai, for example, argues: "you must examine how the first-born, our father, transposed upon us his transgression. He heard that 'dust thou art and unto dust shalt thou return'; and his incorruption was changed into corruption, he became subject to the bondage of death. Since Adam fathered children only after his Fall, we become heirs of his corruption. We are not punished for his disobedience to the Divine Law. Rather, Adam being mortal, sin entered into his very seed. We receive mortality from him . . . The general punishment of Adam for his transgression is corruption and death" (Questions and Answers on Various Chapters, 143). Likewise, defending the issue of infant baptisms, St. Cyprian of Carthage also maintains that since "no one is precluded from baptism and grace, . . . [so] ought not an infant be forbidden, who, being newly born, has in no way sinned, but only having contracted the contagion of death" (Letter to Fidus, LVIII, 2). Blessed Augustine, on the other hand, writing of those predestined by God, as he believed, to eternal death, holds that "they are punished not on account of the sins which they add by the indulgence of their own will, but on account of the original sin, even if, as in the case of infants, they had added nothing to that original sin" (On the Soul and its Origin, IV, 16).

It can be said that while we have not inherited the guilt of Adam's personal sin, because his sin is also of a generic nature, and because the entire human race is possessed of an essential, ontological unity,[12] we participate in it by virtue of our participation in the human race. "The imparting of Original Sin by means of natural heredity should be understood in terms of the unity of the entire human nature, and of the homoousiotitos [13] of all men, who, connected by nature, constitute one mystic whole. Inasmuch as human nature is indeed unique and unbreakable, the imparting of sin from the first-born to the entire human race descended from him is rendered explicable: 'Explicitly, as from the root, the sickness proceeded to the rest of the tree, Adam being the root who had suffered corruption'" [St. Cyril of Alexandria].[14
http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/dogmatics/golubov_rags_of_mortality.htm


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« Reply #167 on: July 31, 2009, 07:30:41 AM »

Kaste,
I am surprised of how you can't get the difference between "stain" and "guilt". Nobody here doubts that we all have a stain of sin since conception. That this stain also implies guilt, this is entirely rejected.
I'll give you my definitions of "stain" and "guilt", if you want...
STAIN: an impurity which obscures one's nature and thus damages the communion with God
GUILT: an act of human will against God's law which merits eternal damnation

We believe we are all in stain since our creation, but we are guilty of Adam and Eve's sin only when we actually sin, because sin is always of the same nature: it is an alteration of our original natural condition. With the TV-example, ialmisry caught the sign. Children are not guilty of anything, because they have no will concerning salvation or damnation. They don't even know of God and so they can't refuse him or accept him. They have no moral attitude towards good or evil. They are just born in a condition of impurity of the outside world and are thus contaminated with the cancer of death. I ask you a question: if a child is born of a killer in exile, is he himself guilty just because he necessarily shares in the punishment of his father?

And to answer your question: yes, most Orthodox in those two centuries believed that children were damned. There's nothing strange, the question has never been defined dogmatically and they were free to speculate in their heretic pseudosynod of Jerusalem. The Church had to confess in a fallible council this heresy, so that it might be condemned by us in our days with a mature judgment. After all, the Eastern Church had never heard of such an heresy as total depravity before it came to the East through the words of the corrupted Western Churches, and they might have thought - as they were grown in a Roman Catholic world - that it could be true. Embracing heresy (even st Gregory of Nissa expressed approval of the heresy of apokatastasis, but can we condemn him?) they brought to the attention of the Church this unorthodox faith. Afterall, all heresies, to be true heresies, must have been confessed within the Church to be condemned. It is an honour for the church to experience and later condemn heresies: it is a sign of the truth of the Orthodox Church.

In Christ,   Alex
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« Reply #168 on: August 01, 2009, 04:34:26 PM »

Ladies and Gentlemen,

It has been interesting discussing with many of you here.  Nothing further is necessary from my end.  All who value approaching contentious matters with open-mind, ask yourselves, 'Why would the Orthodox Church damn unbaptized babies?'.  There must be some inherited "stain" or "mark" of sin on infants.  The West calls this inherited guilt.  The East did as well at various times.  Even modern Orthodox admit there is this "stain".  Some here call it "terminally ill". 

People of this forum, do not let yourselves be bullied or overwhelmed by those of many words.  Determine on your own if the effect and essence are essentially the same.  Baptism removes this "guilt" or "stain" because without that "guilt" or "stain" lifted, we cannot enter the Kingdom of Heaven.  Same essence.  Same effect.   

If there truly was the difference the Neo-Orthodox claim exists, the honest inquirer would expect to see Eastern councils or Patriarchs strongly condemning Augustine's so called invention of "inherited guilt." 

They do not because they essentially agreed with Augustine on this one.  In fact, as I have shown, they have done the opposite.

As promised I will now tell you what Church I identify with.  It is the Kingdom of God.  The body of all believers of Jesus Christ.  Baptised in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  Do not forget the simple faith of the thief on the cross all you who are quick to condemn others. 

May the visible Church of God grow into perfection and reach out more to those already walking the path of God. 
Godspeed to all followers of Christ!

K




I can tell you don't read the early church fathers and nonfathers.......especially the eastern ones. Someone who has read them could never make some of the statements you just made above.


















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« Reply #169 on: August 03, 2009, 08:50:20 AM »

St. Nicholas Cabasilas Archbishop of Thessalonic 1355-91, On the Life in Christ:
Quote
It was neither yesterday nor the day before that the evil began, but at the time that we began to exist. As soon as Adam despised his good Master by believing the evil one and was perverted in will, his soul lost its health and well-being. From that time on his body agreed with the soul and was in accord with it, and was perverted with it like an instrument in the hand of the craftsman...Because our nature was extended and our race increased as it proceeded from the first body, so wickedness too, like any other natural characteristic, was transmitted to the bodies which proceeded from that body...It therefore followed that each man's soul inherited the wickedness of the first Adam. It spread from his soul to his body, and from his body to the bodies which derived from his, and from those bodies to the souls...This, then, is the old man whom we have received as a seed of evil from our ancestors as we came into existence. We have not seen even one day pure from sin, nor have we ever breathed apart from wickedness, but, as the psalmist says, 'we have gone astray from the womb, we err from our birth' [Psalm 58:3]. We did not even stand still in this unhappy lot of the sin of our ancestors, nor were we content with the evils which we had inherited....there was no intermission of the evil, but the disease progressed continually....It is from these most terrible bonds, this punishment, disease, and death, that the baptismal washing sets us free. This it does so easily that there is no need to take a long time, so perfectly that not a trace is left. nor does it merely set us free from wickedness, it also confers the opposite condition. Because of His death the Master Himself gave us the power to slay sin, and because He came to life again He made us heirs of the new life. His death, by being a death slays the evil life, by being a penalty it pays the penalty for sins to which each one of us was liable for our evil actions. In this way the baptismal washing renders us pure of every habit and action of sin in that is makes us partakers of Christ's life-giving health.
http://books.google.com/books?id=iE45LzrfZuwC&pg=PA76&lpg=PA76&dq=On+the+Life+in+Christ+Baptism+and+Original+Sin&source=bl&ots=Z3IcJvKKnK&sig=FdSC9DaTfjVsrp_OdpJPNckbYHM&hl=en&ei=BNt2SvT1E4yTtgft1tGWCQ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1#v=onepage&q=&f=false
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« Reply #170 on: August 03, 2009, 01:12:02 PM »

Another way to put it:

Does original sin alone incur everlasting punishment?

K
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« Reply #171 on: December 13, 2010, 07:22:20 PM »

In response to ialmsiry's first post in the thread.

Why would the angels ever turn away from God who is perfect and all things good? How could they choose what was otherwise perfect?
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« Reply #172 on: December 13, 2010, 07:46:44 PM »

In response to ialmsiry's first post in the thread.

Why would the angels ever turn away from God who is perfect and all things good? How could they choose what was otherwise perfect?

Read the Church Fathers on the issue of free will! Do the hard work and start reading! I'm not gonna do the work for you!
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« Reply #173 on: December 13, 2010, 08:01:54 PM »

In response to ialmsiry's first post in the thread.

Why would the angels ever turn away from God who is perfect and all things good? How could they choose what was otherwise perfect?

Read the Church Fathers on the issue of free will! Do the hard work and start reading! I'm not gonna do the work for you!
Here's the thing though. Why would anyone turn away from which that is perfect? It makes no sense, even if some sort of "free will" was involved. There must be something about God that made Lucifer want to become God which he though he could. What did lucifer do against God as an attempt to become God?
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« Reply #174 on: December 13, 2010, 08:06:36 PM »

In response to ialmsiry's first post in the thread.

Why would the angels ever turn away from God who is perfect and all things good? How could they choose what was otherwise perfect?
Pride. Free will.
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« Reply #175 on: December 13, 2010, 08:15:18 PM »

In response to ialmsiry's first post in the thread.

Why would the angels ever turn away from God who is perfect and all things good? How could they choose what was otherwise perfect?

Read the Church Fathers on the issue of free will! Do the hard work and start reading! I'm not gonna do the work for you!
Here's the thing though. Why would anyone turn away from which that is perfect? It makes no sense,

No, it doesn't. And yet it happens ALL the time.

I'll give you an example.  Hugh Grant

who was engaged to

paid money to have sex with

I remeber the good looking women at events Grant was at, who waved signs "I would have done it for Hugh for free."

Quote
even if some sort of "free will" was involved.

The mounds of evidence of stupid choices made obviate any need to answer this point.

Quote
There must be something about God that made Lucifer want to become God which he though he could.
His Divinity.
Quote
What did lucifer do against God as an attempt to become God?
Rebel.
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« Reply #176 on: December 13, 2010, 09:24:54 PM »

In response to ialmsiry's first post in the thread.

Why would the angels ever turn away from God who is perfect and all things good? How could they choose what was otherwise perfect?

Read the Church Fathers on the issue of free will! Do the hard work and start reading! I'm not gonna do the work for you!
Here's the thing though. Why would anyone turn away from which that is perfect? It makes no sense, even if some sort of "free will" was involved. There must be something about God that made Lucifer want to become God which he though he could. What did lucifer do against God as an attempt to become God?

 I think I once read somewhere that Lucifer's rebellion was in great part because god elevated man to a higher level than that of angels and he despised that choice.
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« Reply #177 on: December 13, 2010, 09:41:27 PM »

Quote
Hello Ladies and Gentlemen,

After following the entire thread, one important thing is missing:

"We believe Holy Baptism...to be of the highest necessity.  For without it none is able to be saved...And therefore, it is necessary even for infants, since they also are subject to original sin, and without Baptism are not able to obtain its remission.  And forasmuch as infants are men, and as such need salvation, since they have not received the remission of hereditary sin, are, of necessity, subject to eternal punishment, and consequently cannot without Baptism be saved."

-Decree XVI, The Confessions of Dositheus from the Sixth Chapter of Acts and Decrees of the Synod of Jerusalem 1672.

If not because of "inherited guilt/sin from Adam" why are the babies in danger of hellfire if unbaptized?

K

Your indicated source has no meaning and force of dogma to us, since it is well known that the Decrees of the Synod of Jerusalem are a fruit of the so-called "Western Captivity". At the time, many Orthodox clergymen studied theology in Catholic seminaries when leaving in the West, so the cultural influence of Roman Catholicism on Orthodoxy was at its peak. Also, this council was held against the un-orthodox teachings of Patriarch Cyril Lucaris, who was introducing Calvinist ideas in Orthodoxy from his highly influential position: I think we should understand as 'good' only the 'negative' pronouncements (that is the anathemas against unorthodox Calvinist theories) rather then the positive theological conclusions of that local Council - its Panorthodoxy can also be easily discussed, since most of the results of the 1672 Synod have been widely rejected by many Orthodox theologians and clergy, or have never been applied in concrete. For example, the same word 'transsubstantiation' has been immediately rejected by the Orthodox and has never entered our official theology, since it expresses a Roman Catholic approach to the Mystery of Holy Eucharist which is foreign to EO. I think that most of modern Orthodox will state that this Synod has a good authority but no infallibility; the only certain Synods which issued infallible statements are the fist seven Ecumenical Councils common to RCism (even when confirming the decisions of the previous local synods), plus the Eigth Ecumenical Council of 879/880 AD (since it was signed by the five Patriarchs). Even the highly authoritative and generally accepted canons and doctrines of Costantinople V (the so-called Palamite Synod) are not "infallible": in this case, they are just in agreement with the Faith of the Church (which doesn't mean they're infallible statements!). To give you an example: the writings of the Church fathers are not infallible (as Holy Scripture is) on matters of faith, yet they have a high degree of authority. It's the agreement of a Father with the living and experienced Faith of the Church which seals those writings as correct and authoritative to us. The same can be said of the Ecumenical Councils: these are infallible in content, language and decisions, and are exact pronunciations of faith on the same level as the Holy Bible and the Liturgical Life of the Church, while the local councils can be fallible and yet have some authority. What's important with the Council of Jerusalem is its rejection of Calvinism, that's it!

In Christ,   Alex

PS: In case you might think the Church is not infallible because it accepted fallible statements in the Council of Jerusalem: the hierarchy is made of fallible human beings, it's the consent of the Church in its entirety which forms the Holy-Spirit enlightened conscience of the Orthodox Church. This is true especially if you give a look at the acceptance of iconoclasm by most hierarchs at the time before the 7th Ecumenical Council... its the faith of the laymen believers which prevailed after all: this is the true force of Orthodoxy!


Ugh. That Patriarch Cyril Lukaris of blessed memory was by no means a Calvinist or taught anything contrary to the Orthodox faith, but anathematized Calvinism and Latin errors, has been shown elsewhere on this forum.
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« Reply #178 on: December 13, 2010, 09:56:36 PM »

In response to ialmsiry's first post in the thread.

Why would the angels ever turn away from God who is perfect and all things good? How could they choose what was otherwise perfect?

Read the Church Fathers on the issue of free will! Do the hard work and start reading! I'm not gonna do the work for you!
Here's the thing though. Why would anyone turn away from which that is perfect? It makes no sense,

No, it doesn't. And yet it happens ALL the time.

I'll give you an example.  Hugh Grant...


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« Reply #179 on: November 08, 2011, 04:45:12 AM »

deleted  ... wrong thread
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