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Author Topic: Sola-Scriptura...  (Read 5751 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: May 27, 2010, 06:41:56 AM »

Hello! I am new to the  boards and have been studying Orthodoxy for about 8 months now. Personally i subscribe to Sola-Scriptura but dont believe it conflicts with Holy tradition. I want to requote my post form "is protestantism heretical"

Hello I am new here have been studying Orthodox Church since I Joined the International House Of Prayer in Kansas City ... On a different note I found this site from a article mentioned before about Sola Scriptura. I read the article and was quite impressed mainly because I have no problem with Holy Tradition but I would like to ask an opinion. personally I have only applied Sola Scriptura as an interpretative rule. by this I mean I use scripture to interpret scripture. I do have a hard time accepting things not in scripture but I believe it is more than possible for God to have preserved His blessed church and I firmly believe the human soul cries out for tradition ... I personally would like to think I'm not a heretic I have nothing against the Holy traditions I am actually searching out the scriptures to legitimize them, where you would say it isn't necessary I would say it doesn't hurt  Grin...

Where some would say i dont subscribe to Sola-Scriptura 100% I believe I do by this...

1 Corinthians 11:2 I praise you because you remember me in everything and maintain the traditions just as I passed them on to you.

2 Thessalonians 2:15 Therefore, brothers and sisters, stand firm and hold on to the traditions that we taught you, whether by speech or by letter.

2 Thessalonians 3:6 But we command you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, to keep away from any brother who lives an undisciplined life and not according to the tradition they received from us.

Supposedly the earliest liturgies of the Orthodox church traditionally originate in first century from Apostles James and Mark, Scholarly however are dated to early 4th century correct? To take a prudent look I will go with the later date of early 4th century. The canon of the NT was not made till the the end of the 4th century, just after the second Council. This means the same church, unified by the Holy spirit, that named the canon of scripture and comprised at least 5 of the Ecumenical Councils would (or at least COULD) have been practicing the Traditions outlined within these Liturgies. Then as subscribing to Sola-Scritura I would have to by authorities of the scriptures join in these traditions correct? I would of coarse love to take on opinions by others on these statements and be corrected of any error. But what puzzles me is why orthodoxy doesn't just prove itself in Scriptures? i understand you don't feel the need to and shouldn't have to, but if its possible why not you could i believe convert more protestants. We really are devout to the scriptures if you can prove your traditions (whether needed for yourselves or not) you can win over other devout Christians. Reminds me of Paul in saying "I have become all things to all people, so that by all means I may save some." and being from this younger generation i can personally attest as I did in my Quote if not humanity then at least the generations around mine are desperate for not only spirituality but traditions, Something solid to hold to in a life that to us is so unreliable. As I said i have REALLY enjoyed my studies in the Orthodox church and each day it seems like i am becoming more and more likely to convert, I just cant understand why more Orthodox don't use scriptures more in dealing with Protestants. One instance in the Greek Orthodox church i have been attending the Issue of hell came up and i hold the same belief of the Orthodox church that hell is in the presence of God but the Father explained it to me without any reference to Scripture. I respect and honor the early fathers but i'm a protestant and that kind of explanation is not going to help me see Orthodox understanding.
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« Reply #1 on: May 27, 2010, 08:27:17 AM »

Although sola scriptura is not doctrinally embraced within the church the liturgical cycle of our Sunday liturgy and the 12 great feasts of the Lord are those that teach the basics of the faith and defined by scripture as are the basic sacraments. There is all the reason to embrace your Bible in living the Orthodox faith in which a sense of living your life as the Lord did one experiences the liturgical sharing in the incarnation (Christmas), the passion & resurrection (holy week to Pascha), Transfiguration (Matthew 17) etc. In the sacrament of holy communion we express our total faith in Him (per John 6, 1st Corinthians 11 etc.). Re  heaven & hell, we observe the Sunday of the last judgement (matthew 25:31-46) in the last week before Great Lent. How vibrant this may be varies in the parish level of course (& within ourselves). Also the sense of continuation of tradition of liturgical worship from the tabernacle, to the temple, to the church is evident in the liturgy. When experiencing the Divine Liturgy, compare the great litany given as it commences to the great prayer of Solomon in 2 Chronicles 6 (& 1st Kings 8 I think) and this could be a device that can offer a spiritual sense that one feel the presence of what is written in the scriptures one reads.
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« Reply #2 on: May 27, 2010, 09:09:19 AM »

Being a former Lutheran, I have no problem discussing the Scriptures with Protestants.  The true Orthodox hold the Scriptures as the Word of God no differently than a devout Lutheran.  The difference is in interpretation.  If you read the Dogmatic writings of the Lutheran Church, you will see many times where the phrase "the Fathers erred when they . . .".  You can not discuss a topic when the base is so vastly different.  To the Lutherans, the Fathers erred in their interpretation of the very book they compiled.  To the Orthodox, Luther is a heretic, making his interpretation of Scripture worthless.  This does not leave much to discuss.  In any case, it is not our place to "discuss" the Word of God with heretics since they have nothing to offer.  What does falsehood have to offer Truth?  It is our place to proclaim the True Faith, and let the seed fall where it will.  That which falls on the fertile soil will grow and become part of the Church.  If a person is moved by the Holy Spirit to seek the Truth, they will find it.  And the Scriptures, correctly interpreted, are sufficient to lead them to the correct path.
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« Reply #3 on: May 27, 2010, 10:36:05 AM »

One instance in the Greek Orthodox church i have been attending the Issue of hell came up and i hold the same belief of the Orthodox church that hell is in the presence of God but the Father explained it to me without any reference to Scripture. I respect and honor the early fathers but i'm a protestant and that kind of explanation is not going to help me see Orthodox understanding.

Hello to you too. Grin

Orthodoxy is meant to be lived and after a while of being in the "system" one doesn't have to use the bible as a road-map because they are living according to it's beliefs. Just as a carpenter can tell how many nails it would take to frame a shed. His experience tells him without the need to open a book. Wink
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« Reply #4 on: May 27, 2010, 11:07:19 AM »

Hello! I am new to the  boards and have been studying Orthodoxy for about 8 months now. Personally i subscribe to Sola-Scriptura but dont believe it conflicts with Holy tradition.

Dear Seafra, in addition to the Sola Scriptura article on this website, I would highly recommend the one by Fr. John Whiteford, a former Solar Scriptura Protestant himself: http://orthodoxinfo.com/inquirers/tca_solascriptura.aspx.  

This is the best article I have read on the subject.

This means the same church, unified by the Holy spirit, that named the canon of scripture and comprised at least 5 of the Ecumenical Councils would (or at least COULD) have been practicing the Traditions outlined within these Liturgies. Then as subscribing to Sola-Scritura I would have to by authorities of the scriptures join in these traditions correct?

Well, Sola Scriptura is itself a teaching of man that is not found in the Scriptures themselves.  If you were truly Sola Scriptura you would end up not being Sola Scriptura!  For instance, the Scriptures say that the Church is “the pillar and ground of the truth (1 Tim 3:15).”  The Lord said he would send the Spirit who would guide the Church “into all truth (John 16:13).”  The Lord said to the Church through his apostles, “I will be with you always, even to the end of the age (Matt 28:20)” as well as “I will establish my Church, and the gates of Hades will not prevail against it (Matt 16:18).”  All of these words of Holy Scripture are affirmed in the Orthodox criteria that, as St. Vincent of Lerins stated, the true faith is “that faith which has been believed everywhere, always, by all.”  

http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/inquirers/vincent.aspx

Roman Catholicism and all of Protestantism have departed significantly from the unified faith of the first Christian millennium, from that which was held in common by Christians since Apostolic times.  It is this common faith that is the criterion of truth, rather that subjective interpretations of Scriptures.    

But what puzzles me is why orthodoxy doesn't just prove itself in Scriptures? I understand you don't feel the need to and shouldn't have to, but if its possible why not you could i believe convert more protestants.

Certainly some very good attempts have been made to present Orthodoxy to Protestants of a Sola Scriptura background.  The Orthodox Study Bible (OSB) is an attempt at this.  Fr. Peter Gilquist’s book Becoming Orthodox may also be helpful in this regard.  However, in the end, heresy cannot be used to prove Orthodoxy.  The criteria of Sola Scriptura, if one is committed to it unquestionably, regardless of whether anyone before Luther every held such an erroneous position, is itself unOrthodox and therefore cannot lead a person to Orthodoxy.  This one doctrine, as Fr. John Whiteford points out so well, is the source of all the divisions and heresies in Protestantism so one cannot really learn the truth before parting from this foundation of falsehood.  So, if you want to learn about Orthodoxy, first take a long hard look at Sola Scriptura to see if you are applying the right criteria for finding the truth.  A defective compass will get you lost and a falsified map cannot lead you home.

I just cant understand why more Orthodox don't use scriptures more in dealing with Protestants. One instance in the Greek Orthodox church i have been attending the Issue of hell came up and i hold the same belief of the Orthodox church that hell is in the presence of God but the Father explained it to me without any reference to Scripture.

Keep in mind, since the Church has never taught or believed Solar Scriptura, Orthodox priests may not all be equipped to provide Scriptural justification for everything.  That doesn’t mean that there isn’t Scriptural justification for a given belief, but for Orthodox Christians it is enough that the Church, “the pillar and ground of the truth” has affirmed certain things in world-wide (Ecumenical) councils and the saints who have been sanctified by the Holy Spirit have held certain things in common since the time of the Apostles.  We believe that the Holy Scriptures are all inspired writings because that is what the Church has said in Ecumenical Councils and what many of our Fathers have affirmed, and not for any other reason.  Did the Bible assemble itself?  Did it translate itself?  Did it drop town from heaven in full form with a note from God saying “do that which is written here, nothing more, nothing less?”  On what authority do we believe that the Scriptures are inspired in the first place if we do not believe in the authority of the Church who testified of this inspiration?  

The Orthodox Church has loved and cherished the Holy Scriptures since the time of the Apostles, but we understand their purpose and how they are to be applied.  One of our beloved saints, St. Seraphim of Sarov, read the New Testament from beginning to end every week.  Some of our monks on Mt. Athos read all four gospels every day.  At certain times in the past, one had to know the Psalms by heart before one could become a bishop.  Some strict monasteries required monks to memorize the entire New Testament and the Psalms before they could be officially tonsured a monk.  Some of our saints memorized both Old and New Testaments.  Our church services are filled with Psalms and quotes from the Scriptures.  However, these Scriptures were given to the Church, compiled by the Church, handed down and preserved by the Church, and the Church instructed the faithful on how to rightly apply the Scriptures.  Those outside of the Orthodox Church who read the Scriptures do so outside of the entire living context which brings to life the dead letter.  

Vitamins are essential to our bodily health, yet eating is the primary way for us to take in the vitamins and other nutrients that the body requires.  Vitamins are essential, but to take a multivitamin and abandon eating is utter foolishness.  When a food is eaten which contains vitamins, the other constituents that make up this food enable the body to absorb the vitamins for the benefit of bodily health, whereas when vitamins are taken by themselves many of them are not absorbed but rather pass through the body or are destroyed by the stomach acids with no actual benefit to the person’s health.  This is the difference between reading the Scriptures as a member of the Orthodox Church and reading them as a non-Orthodox person.

I pray that your search will be profitable.  Remember, the Lord promises that those who seek find.  Be patient and proceed with much prayer, fasting, and humility, and the God who enlightened the centurion Cornelius will give light to your mind as well.
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« Reply #5 on: May 27, 2010, 12:48:18 PM »

One instance in the Greek Orthodox church i have been attending the Issue of hell came up and i hold the same belief of the Orthodox church that hell is in the presence of God but the Father explained it to me without any reference to Scripture. I respect and honor the early fathers but i'm a protestant and that kind of explanation is not going to help me see Orthodox understanding.

Hello to you too. Grin

Orthodoxy is meant to be lived and after a while of being in the "system" one doesn't have to use the bible as a road-map because they are living according to it's beliefs. Just as a carpenter can tell how many nails it would take to frame a shed. His experience tells him without the need to open a book. Wink

Very good point!
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« Reply #6 on: May 27, 2010, 01:37:13 PM »

One instance in the Greek Orthodox church i have been attending the Issue of hell came up and i hold the same belief of the Orthodox church that hell is in the presence of God but the Father explained it to me without any reference to Scripture. I respect and honor the early fathers but i'm a protestant and that kind of explanation is not going to help me see Orthodox understanding.

Hello to you too. Grin

Orthodoxy is meant to be lived and after a while of being in the "system" one doesn't have to use the bible as a road-map because they are living according to it's beliefs. Just as a carpenter can tell how many nails it would take to frame a shed. His experience tells him without the need to open a book. Wink

Very good point!

This is off topic: Do you call yourself punch as in the cigar?
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« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2010, 02:47:58 PM »

An article I wrote for the site's article section: "The Unbiblical Doctrine of Sola Scriptura."
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« Reply #8 on: May 27, 2010, 06:32:56 PM »

One instance in the Greek Orthodox church i have been attending the Issue of hell came up and i hold the same belief of the Orthodox church that hell is in the presence of God but the Father explained it to me without any reference to Scripture. I respect and honor the early fathers but i'm a protestant and that kind of explanation is not going to help me see Orthodox understanding.

Hello to you too. Grin

Orthodoxy is meant to be lived and after a while of being in the "system" one doesn't have to use the bible as a road-map because they are living according to it's beliefs. Just as a carpenter can tell how many nails it would take to frame a shed. His experience tells him without the need to open a book. Wink

Very good point!

This is off topic: Do you call yourself punch as in the cigar?

Both after the cigar that I enjoy, and the curmudgeon that it is named after.  While I tend to prefer the Montecristo Afrique line of cigars, and the Davidoffs, there are times like on warm muggy days that nothing brightens up the World for me like a Punch Gran Puro Santa Rita.
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« Reply #9 on: May 27, 2010, 08:32:56 PM »

One instance in the Greek Orthodox church i have been attending the Issue of hell came up and i hold the same belief of the Orthodox church that hell is in the presence of God but the Father explained it to me without any reference to Scripture. I respect and honor the early fathers but i'm a protestant and that kind of explanation is not going to help me see Orthodox understanding.

Hello to you too. Grin

Orthodoxy is meant to be lived and after a while of being in the "system" one doesn't have to use the bible as a road-map because they are living according to it's beliefs. Just as a carpenter can tell how many nails it would take to frame a shed. His experience tells him without the need to open a book. Wink

Very good point!

This is off topic: Do you call yourself punch as in the cigar?

Both after the cigar that I enjoy, and the curmudgeon that it is named after.  While I tend to prefer the Montecristo Afrique line of cigars, and the Davidoffs, there are times like on warm muggy days that nothing brightens up the World for me like a Punch Gran Puro Santa Rita.
You are a man of impeccable taste. Wink I myself enjoy the CEO Camaroon and Macanudo on occasion. I also enjoy a full flavored Cuban Punch as well.
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« Reply #10 on: May 28, 2010, 09:22:52 AM »

Forgive me, Seafra, but I don't think I understand your post.
You say you believe in Sola Scriptura, but that this doesn't conflict with Holy Tradition. As I understand Orthodoxy (and my understanding is pretty limited so this may be where I'm struggling), there is no suggestion that Holy Tradition conflicts with the Scriptures, but rather expands and helps us to understand them.

That's the first thing I'm confused about. The second thing is, why do you think Orthodox people can't proof-text Scripture to prove their points to Protestants? In my experience, they can.

If you yourself were to quote from Scripture to argue a point of your faith, you might explain what it mean, mightn't you? In my view, Orthodoxy is most convincing to Sola Scriptura adherents when people use Holy Tradition in this way, as another voice explaining Scripture. I'm aware this isn't the full purpose or power of Holy Tradition, but I think it can often be very convincing. What I suppose I'm getting at is, are you saying that you think the Orthodox ought to cite Scripture more because you think Sola Scriptura is better than Holy Tradition, or because it would be a good rhetorical tool against Protestants? If the latter, would that not be self-defeating, since an Orthodox person citing Scripture might convince a Protestant of some detail of faith, but would still need to convince them of the validity or wisdom of Holy Tradition.

Forgive me if I am not being very perceptive here.
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« Reply #11 on: May 28, 2010, 11:16:25 AM »

We view Scripture as being within Holy Tradition.....not necessarily separate from it. And so for us, it's not really Scripture & Holy Tradition, but Scripture IN Holy Tradition. Some scholars would call this a Prima Scriptura view instead of a Sola/Solo Scriptura view.





Quote
The Metropolitan Timothy(Kallistos) Ware:


Quote:
""Orthodox are always talking about Tradition.
What do they mean by the word? A tradition is commonly understood to signify an
opinion, belief or custom handed down from ancestors to posterity. Christian
tradition in that case, is the faith and practice which Jesus Christ imparted to
the Apostles, and which since the Apostles' time has been handed down from
generation in the Church. But to an Orthodox Christian, Tradition means
something more concrete and specific than this. It means the books of the Bible;
it means the Creed; it means the decrees of the Ecumenical Councils and the
writings of the Fathers; it means the Canons, the Service Books, the Holy Icons
— in fact, the whole system of doctrine, Church government, worship,
spirituality and art which Orthodoxy has articulated over the ages. Orthodox
Christian of today see themselves as heirs and guardians to a rich inheritance
received from the past, and they believe that it is their duty to transmit this
inheritance unimpaired to the future.

Note that the Bible forms a part
of Tradition. Sometimes Tradition is defined as the oral teaching of Christ, not
recorded in writing by His immediate disciples. Not only non-Orthodox but many
Orthodox writers have adopted this way of speaking, treating Scripture and
tradition as two different things, two distinct sources of the Christian faith.
But in reality there is only one source, since Scripture exists within
Tradition. to separate and contrast the two is to impoverish the idea of both
alike.
Orthodox, while reverencing this inheritance from the past, are also
well aware that not everything received from the past is of equal value. Among
the various elements of Tradition, a unique pre-eminence belongs to the Bible,
to the Creed, to the doctrinal definitions of the Ecumenical Councils: these
things the Orthodox accept as something absolute and unchanging, something which
cannot be cancelled or revised. The other parts of Tradition do not have quite
the same authority. The decrees of Jassy or Jerusalem do not stand on the same
level as the Nicene Creed, nor do the writings of an Athanasius, or a Symeon the
New Theologian, occupy the same position as the Gospel of St. John.
Not
everything received from the past is of equal value, nor is everything received
from the past necessarily true. As one of the bishops remarked at the Council of
Carthage in 257: 'The Lord said, I am truth. He did not say, I am custom.' There
is a difference between 'Tradition' and traditions': many traditions which the
past has handed down are human and accidental- pious opinions (or worse), but
not a true part of the one Tradition, the fundamental Christian message. pages
196-197 [1]




Quote

Quote

Quote:
"The Bible and the Church. The Christian Church
is a Scriptural Church: Orthodoxy believes this just as firmly, if not more
firmly, than Protestantism. The Bible is the supreme expression of God's
revelation to the human race, and Christians must always be 'people of the
Book'. But if Christians are People of the Book, the Bible is the Book of the
People; it must not be regarded as something set up over the Church, but as
something that lives and is understood within the Church (that is why one should
not separate Scripture and Tradition). It is from the Church that the Bible
ultimately derives its authority, for it was the Church which originally decided
which books form a part of Holy Scripture; and it is the Church alone which can
interpret Holy Scripture with Authority. There are many sayings in the Bible
which by themselves are far from clear, and individual readers, however sincere,
are in danger of error, and individual readers, however sincere, are in danger
of error if they trust their own personal interpretation. 'Do you understand
what you are reading? Philop asked the Ethiopian eunuch; and the eunuch replied,
'How can I, unless someone guides me?' (Acts viii, 30-I). Orthodox, when they
read the Scripture, accept the guidance of the Church. When received into the
Orthodox Church, a convert promises, 'I will accept and understand Holy
Scripture in accordance with the interpretation which was and is held by the
Holy Orthodox Catholic Church of the East, our Mother.'" pages 199-200
[2]




As well as


Quote
Clark Carlton:


Quote
"Furthermore, the Orthodox Church has never
accepted the Roman Catholic assertion that there are two sources of authority.
The Church recognizes one and only one source of Authority for Her faith and
practice: the apostolic tradition. The Divine Scriptures are part-albeit the
most important part-of the tradition. To set Scriptures up as something over and
apart from tradition is to have the tail wagging the dog." pages 135-136
[3]



Quote
Anthony M. Coniaris:


Quote
"Fr. Theodore Stylianopoulos, Professor of New
Testament at Holy Cross School of Theodore Stylianopoulos, Professor of New
Testament at Holy Cross School of Theology, asks us to look upon the Bible as a
record of truth and not truth itself. He writes, ''. . . there emerged in
Orthodox tradition the position that the Bible is the record of truth, not the
truth itself. . . According to the Church Fathers, the truth itself is God
alone." Such an approach to the Bible according to Fr. Stylianopoulos leaves
room for "other records of the experience of God, such as the writings of the
Church Fathers, the liturgical forms and texts, and the decisions of the
Ecumenical Councils. It rescues the Church from an exclusive focus on the Bible.
. .and thus guards Orthodox life from the error of idolatrous veneration of the
text of Scripture (bibliolatry)." In other words, God kept on talking even after
His book had gone to press. This is what Sacred Tradition is all about. Even
though the Orthodox Church distingushes between record and truth, and esteems
also other records of the life of the Holy Spirit in the Church, "the Bible
still remains the primary record in the theological tradition and worship of the
Church. . .The main source of patristic theology is Holy Scripture. . . No other
treasure in the tradition of the Church equals the accessibilty, value and
authority of the Bible. . .The Orthodox Church does not have a fundamentalist
but it does have a fundamental view of the sanctity and authority of the
Bible."" [4] page 155



Quote
Quote
"Since the Bible was written under the guidance of
the Holy Spirit, it is the Holy Spirit abiding in the Church who is the Proper
Interpreter of the Bible. The Church, in other words, is the custodian, the
caretaker, the interpreter of the Bible. It is the Holy Spirit abiding in the
Church Who has guided, and continues to guide, the Church through the centuries
to the proper interpretation of the Scriptures." [5] page 156


and



Quote
"Sacred Tradition plays an important role in the
interpretation of Scripture. By Sacred Tradition we mean, "the life of the Holy
Spirit in the Church" (Vladimir Lossky). The Holy Spirit has been abiding in the
Church since Pentecost guiding it to all truth, i.e., to the proper
interpretation of Scripture. The Orthodox Church does not ignore what the Spirit
has taught in the past regarding Scripture. On the contrary, it treasures this
revelation which comes to us through the Church Fathers and the Councils of the
Church. Thus Scripture and Tradition belong together. Both came from the same
source: the life of the Holy Spirit in the Church. Because of this, we believe
that the Bible needs Sacred Tradition as the living interpreter of God's word,
just as Sacred Tradition needs the Bible as its anchor and foundation. Those who
deny Sacred Tradition replace the entire 2000 period of the life and work of the
Holy Spirit in the Church with one person's interpretation of Scripture,
........(I skipped a few lines).......We read the Bible not as indivduals but as
members of God's Church. The whole Church reads it with us and we read it with
the whole Church.
Fr. Kallistos Ware writes, "....we do not read the Bible
as isolated individuals, interpreting it solely by the light of our private
understanding. . .We read it as members of the Church, in communion with all the
other members throughout the ages. The final criterion for our interpretation of
Scripture is the mind of the Church. And this means keeping constantly in view
how the meaning of Scripture is explained and applied in Holy Tradition: that is
to say, how the Bible is understood by the Fathers and the saints, and how it is
used in liturgical worship." [6] page 157




Quote
The Protestant evangelical scholar Daniel B. Clendenin:

Quote

The Primacy of Holy Scripture
"In general we can say
that for Orthodoxy the Spirit speaks to the church through the gospel tradition
(paradosis), this tradition being defined as a living and authentic continuity
with the apostolic past. "The Apostolic Tradition is the gospel, the word and
event of salvation, entrusted by Jesus to His disciples who received the
authority to proclaim it to the world." Paul transmitted this paradosis to the
Corinthians (1 Cor. 11:2, 23; 15:3), and referred to it on three occasions as an
entrusted deposit which the church must guard (1 Tim. 6:20; Tim. 1:12, 14).
Whatever authority or criteria of truth the church possesses resides in its
fidelity to this original apostolic paradosis. In a comprehensive sense the
apostolic tradition finds expression in any number of external forms, all of
which are means used by the indwelling Spirit. Timothy Ware, for example, lists
seven: Scripture, the seven ecumenical councils, later councils and their
dogmatic statements (Orthodoxy's so-called symbolic books), the Fathers,
liturgy, canon law, and icons. These external forms constitute an organic whole,
and it is only for discussion's sake that we treat them separately. For
convenience we can think of them as tradition that is both written (Scripture)
and unwritten (extracanonical sources) or, to use a common distinction, written
Scripture and oral tradition.

Not all the external forms of the Spirit's
witness are of the same nature or value. Tradition is uniquely expressed in our
present canon of written Scripture. Although Orthodoxy refuses to consider
Scripture apart from the broader context of other forms of tradition, and does
not limit authoritative tradition to the biblical canon, it nevertheless accords
a unique status to the Bible. Liturgically, this can be seen not merely in
Orthodoxy's intense veneration of holy Scripture (the elevating, incensing, and
kissing of the Bible, and its being given the primary place of honar in various
processions), but especially in the rich biblical content of the liturgy itself.
Doctrinally, and contrary to a common Protestant misunderstanding, Orthodoxy
does not endorse a "doctrine of homogenized and unstratified authority," but
instead "affirms unequivocally the primary position of Scripture." [7] pages
108-109


and



Quote
Quote
The Necessity of Holy Tradition
"While the
apostolic deposit finds unique articulation in the written tradition of
canonical Scripture, it is not confined or limited to the biblical text, but
finds fuller expression in extracanonical tradition. Written Scripture is
primary but not exclusive; the tradition of the councils and the Fathers are
indispensable for a number of reasons. First, both the church itself and the
apostolic kerygma existed for nearly three centuries before the ecumenical
councils and the establishment of the scriptural canon. In the Acts of the
Apostles the precanonical "word of God" that the apostles preached about Jesus
continues to grow and flourish, and even seems to be equated with the church
itself (Acts 12:24; 19:20). We also know that Jesus did many things that were
never written down (John 20:30-31;25), and that Paul urged the early Christians
to accept (John 20:30-31;21:25), and that Paul urged the early Christians to
accept both the written and unwritten apostolic paradosis that he passed on to
them (2 Thess. 2:15; 1 Cor 11:2). The oral message preached to the Thessalonians
was rightly received by them as "the word of God" (1 Thess. 2:13; cf. Col. 1:25
and 3:16). Oral tradition is thus a necessary complement or supplement to
written Scripture, for the gospel kerygma is not exactly contiguous with the
canon of Scripture.

Second, Orthodoxy would insist that nobody operates
with a clean slate, a tabula rasa, and, accordingly, noncanonical traditions are
a practical and hermeneutical inevitability. Although someone might claim to
interpret the Scripture de novo in principle, in practice we all read the text
not only with theological or denominational presuppositions, but also through
the space time prisms of our individual cultures and experiences. Furthermore,
even if a neutral reading were possible, it would hardly be desirable because it
would likely lead to arbitrary and errant understandings of the text. Thus it
becomes all the more important tolocate oneself within the apostolic oral
tradition that serves as a hermeneutical context for written Scripture. Third,
liturgical precedent also reveals the importance of noncanonical tradition. We
saw in the last chapter that when defending the use of icons, both John of
Damascus and Theodore the Studite based their cases squarely on the importance
of extrabiblical liturgical tradition. According to Orthodoxy, there are many
similar aspects of the life and liturgy of the church that, while not explicitly
contained in or demanded by Scripture, are of undisputed significance to
believers. Pertinent here is a celebrated passage from Basil's On the Holy
Spirit. In defending the deity of the Holy Spirit, Basil appealed to the fact
that widely used doxologies of the church confessed, "Glory to the Father and to
the Son with the Spirit." While the preposition with was not found in Scripture,
it had all the weight of liturgical precedent, which Basil was of enormous
significance: "Concerning the teachings of the Church, we have received some
from written sources, while others have been given to us secretly, through
apostolic tradition. Both sources have equal force in true in true religion. No
one would deny either source-no one, at any rate, who is even slightly familiar
with the ordinances of the Church. If we attacked unwritten customs, claiming
them to be of little importance, we would fatally mutilate the Gospel, no matter
what our intentions-or rather, we would reduce the Gospel teachings to bare
words." Basil goes on to list some of the uncontested ancient liturgical customs
of the church: certain baptismal practices, and the renunciation of Satan and
his angels. For Basil, not only are certain liturgical traditions of great
importance, "they are indispensable for the preservation of right faith."
Tertullian had made the same point, in a similar manner, more than a century
earlier. Citing important liturgical practices such as the renunciation of the
devil at baptism, threefold immersion, celebration of the Eucharist early in the
morning and only by a bishop, prayers for the dead at the Eucharist, celebration
of the Eucharist on the anniversary of the deaths of martyrs, abstinence from
fasting and from praying in a kneeling position on Sundays, prevention of any
part of the bread and wine from falling onto the ground, and other such
practices, Tertullian remarks: :If you demand a biblical rule for these
observances and others of the same sort, you will find none written. Tradition
will be alleged to you as the authority and custom to support them and faith to
practice them. You yourself will either see the reason which supports the
tradition and the custom and the faith, or you will learn it from someone who
will have seen it. Meanwhile you will believe it to be not lacking in authority
to which to which obedience should be owed." In short, in Basil and Terullian we
see a practical example in which the lex orandi defines the lex credendi. Unless
we wish to denude and mutilate the apostolic tradition, according to Basil and
Tertullian, we will accept the authority of the liturgical precedent, even
though it is not contained in Scripture alone.

Fourth, the necessity of
the extrabiblical tradition finds broad-based support in the theological
methodologies of any number of early fathers, a fact which is of no small
significance for Orthodoxy. Tertullian invoked the "rule of the faith" and
Irenaeus the "canon of truth" against the heretics of their day. Athanasius, the
champion of Nicene orthodoxy, had to defend the council against the Arian charge
that its conclusions (specifically the term homoousios) were innoations. He was
nevertheless thoroughly apostolic. In contending against the Arians, who wished
to limit the argument to Scripture alone, Athanasius appealed to the larger
"scope" (skopos) or "rule" (kanon) of faith, the tradition and teaching of the
catholic church. The stalwart defender of orthodoxy, Ephiphanius, noted that
some elements of the apostolic faith were "delivered to us through the
Scriptures, the others through the Tradition delivered to us by the Holy
Apostles." Chrysostom, commenting on 2 Thessalonians 2:15, pointed out that the
apostles :did not deliver all things by epistle, but many things also unwritten,
and in like manner both the one and the other worthy of credit. Therefore let us
think the Tradition of the Church also worthy of credit. It is a tradition; seek
no farther." Augustine confessed that "I should not have believed the Gospel, if
the authority of the Catholic Church had notmoved me." And so, according to
Orthodoxy, when we appeal to the apostolic tradition outside of sola scriptura,
we stand on the firm ground of the early patristic consensus and theological
method. Of all the justification for invoking the extrabiblical apostolic
tradition a hermeneutical necessity. Hilary of Poitiers noted that "Scripture is
not in the reading but in the understanding," a sentiment repeated by Jerome,
who rebuked certain heretics because, not having the help of the Holy Spirit,
they turned the divine gospel into a human word: "We do not think that [the]
Gospel consits of the words of Scripture but in its meaning........In this case
Scripture is really usefull for the hearers when it is not spoken without
Christ, nor is presented without the Fathers, and those who are preaching do not
introduce it without the Holy Spirit." The problem of misunderstanding as a
result of private interpreting and twisting of the Scripture exposes the
inadequacy of reading the Bible alone and confirms the hermeneutical necessity
of its larger patristic context. This is precisely the problem with heretics, as
George Prestige so sptly observed: "Heretics showed that they could be as
painstaking in their use of Scripture as the saints. The fact soon became
obvious to any intelligent thinker that the principle of 'the Bible and the
Bible only' provides no automatically secure basis for a religion that is to be
genuinely Christian." Irenaeus and Vincent of Lerins made this point in special
ways. Irenaeus employed two striking analogies. He compared heretics' treatment
of Scripture to people who take a beautifully crafted mosaic of a king,
rearrange the pieces to depict a dog or a fox, and then have the audacity to
claim that their rearrangement is the authentic mosaic because it contains the
original materials. Heretics are also like people who arbitrarily rearrange the
poetry of Homer so that, while the verses themselves are original, the meaning
has been grossly distorted. In other words, it is one thing to have at one's
disposal the original material of Scripture, and quite another to us it
properly. Only by adhereing to the apostolic tradition and the rule of truth
will we avoid the hermeneutical distortions of heretics and not mistake foxes
for kings or paltry paraphrases for the real Word.
When searching for a
means to distinguish the true apostolic faith from heresy, Vincent of Lerins
noted that while Scripture is "for all things complete and more than
sufficient," even heretics appeal to Scripture. It seems, Vincent of Lerins
noted that while Scripture is "for all things complete and more than
sufficient," even heretics appeal to Scripture. It seems, Vincent observed, that
"owing to the depth of Holy Scripture, all do not accept it with one and the
same sense, but one understands its words in one way, another in another; so
that it seems to be capable of as many interpretations as there are
interpreters". To "detect the frauds and avoid the snares of heretics as they
rise, and to continue sound and complete in the catholic faith," we need the
authority of tradition, specifically, "that which has believed everywhere,
always, by all." This ecumenicity of time and space serves as a hermeneutical
prism so that, in the words of Hilary and Jerome, we do not merely read the text
but understand it rightly. For Vincent, as Florovsky notes, "Tradition was, in
fact, the authentic interpretation of Scripture. And in this sense it was
co-extensive with Scripture. Tradition was actually 'Scripture rightly
understood.' And Scripture for St. Vincent was the only, primary, and ultimate
canon of Christian truth." [8] pages 110-113







Jnorm888

[1]pages 196-197, [2]pages 199-200 from the book "The Orthodox Church: New Edition" by the Metro Timothy (Kallistos) Ware, Penguin books @ 1997

[3]pages 135-136 from the book "The Way" by Clark Carlton, Regina @ 1997


[4]page 155, [5]page 156, [6]page 157 from the book "Introducing the Orthodox Church: Its Faith and Life" by Anthony M. Coniaris @ 1982


[7]pages 108-109, [8]pages 110-113 from the book "Eastern Orthodox Christianity: A western Perspective" by Daniel B. Clendenin, BakerAcademic @ 2003

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« Reply #12 on: May 28, 2010, 11:21:11 AM »

Also,

Quote
Quote:
"Saint Athanasius and the "scope of Faith"

"The situation did not change in the fourth century.
The dispute with the Arians, at least in its early phase, was centered in the
exegetical field. The Arians and their supporters produced an impressive array
of scriptural texts in the defense of their doctrinal position. They wanted to
restrict theological discussion to the biblical ground alone. Their claims had
to be met precisely on this ground. And their exegetical method, the mannor in
which they handled the text, was much the same as that of earlier dissenters.
They were operating with selected proof-texts and without much concern for the
total context of the revelation.
It was imperative for the Orthodox to appeal to the
mind of the church, to that faith which had been once delivered and then
devoutly kept. This was the main concern and the usual method of Athanasius. The
Arians quoted various passages from the scripture to substantiate their
contention that the Savior was a creature. In reply Athanasius invoked the rule
of faith. This was his usual argument: "Let us who possess τον σκοπν της πιστεως
(the scope of faith) restore the correct meaning (ορθην τηυ διανοιαν) of
what they have wrongly interpreted." Athanasius contended that the correct
interpretation of particular texts was possible only in the total perspective of
faith. "what they now allege from the Gospels they explain in an unsound
sense, as we may discover if we take in consideration τον σκοπον της καθ'
ημας τους χριστιανους πιστεως (the scope of the faith according to us
Christians), and read the scriptures using it (τον σκοπον)
(ωσπερ κανονι χρησαμενοι)." On the other hand, close attention must be given
also to the immediate context and setting of every particular phrase and
expression, and the exact intention of the writer must be carefully
identified.

Writing to Bishop Serapion on the topic of the Holy
Spirit, Athenasius contends again that the Arians ignored or missed "the scope
of the Divine Scripture" (μη ειδοντες τον σκοπον της Θεικας Γραφης). The
σκοπος was, in the language of Athanasius a close equivalent of what Irenaeus
used to denote as νποθεσις - the underlying idea, the true design, the
intended meaning. On the other hand, the word σκοπος was a habitual term in the
exegetical language of certain philosophical schools, especially Neoplatonism.
Exegesis played a great role in the philosophical endeavor of that time, and the
question of hermeneutical principle had to be raised. Jamblichos was, for one,
quite formal on this issue. One had to discover the main point, the basic theme,
of the whole treatise under examination, and to keep it in mind at all times.
Athanasius could well have been acquainted with the technical use of the
term. It was misleading, he contended, to quote isolated texts and passages,
disregarding the total intent of the Holy Writ. It is obviously inaccurate to
interpret Athanasius's use of the term σκοπος as "the general drift" of the
Scripture. The "scope" of the faith, or of the Scripture, is precisely the
credal core, which is condensed in the rule of faith, as maintained in the
church and "transmitted from fathers to fathers"; the Arians by contrast had "no
fathers" to support their opinions. As John Henry Newman has rightly observed,
Athanasius regarded the rule of faith as an ultimate principle of
interpretation, opposing the "ecclesiastical sense" (την εκκλησιαστικην
διανοιαν) to the private opinions of the heretics.
Time and again in his scrutiny of the Arian arguments,
Athanasius would summarize the basic tenets of the Christian faith before going
into the actual reexamination of the alleged proof-texts; in this way he
restored those texts to their proper perspective. H.E.W. Turner has described
this exegetical manner of Athanasius:

against the favorite Arian technique of pressing the
grammatical meaning of a text without regard either to the immediate context or
to the wider frame of reference in the teaching of the Bible as a whole, he
urges the need to take the general drift of the Church's Faith as a Canon of
interpretation. The Arians are blind to the wide sweep of Biblical theology and
therefore fail to take into sufficient account the context in which their
proof-texts are set. The sense of scripture must itself be taken as Scripture.
This has been taken by an argument from Tradition. Certainly not the intention
of Athanasius himself. For him it represents an appeal from exegesis drunk to
exegesis sober, from a myopic insistence upon the grammatical letter to the
meaning or intention (σκοπος, χαρακτηρ) of the Bible.

It seems that Professor Turner exaggerated the danger.
The argument was still strictly scriptural, and in principle Athanasius admitted
the sufficiency of the Scripture, sacred and inspired, for the defense of truth.
Scripture had to be interpreted, however, in the context of the living credal
tradition under the guidance or control of the rule of faith. This rule was in
no sense an extraneous authority which could be imposed on the Holy Writ. It was
the same apostolic preaching which was written down in the books of the New
Testament, but it was, as it were, this preaching in epitome. Athanasius writes
to Bishop Serapion: "Let us look from the beginning at that very tradition,
teaching, and faith of the catholic church which the Lord gave (εδωκεν), the
apostles preached (εκηρυςαν) and the Fathers preserved (εφυλαςαν). Upon this the
Church is founded. This passage is highly characteristic of Athanasius. The
three nouns actually coincide: παραδοσις (tradition) from Christ himself,
διδασκαλια(teaching) by the apostles, and πιστις (faith) of the catholic
church. And this is the foundation (θεμελιον) of the church- a sole and
single foundation. Scripture itself seems to be subsumed and included in this
tradition, coming, as it does, from the Lord. In the concluding chapter of his
first epistle to Serapion, Athanasius returns once more to the same point: "In
accordance with the apostolic faith delivered to us by tradition from the
Fathers, I have delivered the tradition, without inventing to us by tradition
from the Fathers, I have delivered the tradition, without inventing anything
extraneous to it. What I learned, that have I inscribed (ενεχαραςα), conformably
with the Holy Scripture. On another occasion Athanasius denoted the Scripture
itself an apostolic paradosis. It is characteristic that in the whole discussion
with the Arians no single reference was made to "traditions" in the plural. with
the Arians no single reference was made to "traditions" in the plural. The only
term or reference was always "tradition," indeed, the tradition, the apostolic
tradition, comprising the total and integral content of the apostolic preaching,
and summarized in the rule of faith. The unity and solidarity of this tradition
was the main and crucial point in the whole argument.

The Purpose of Exegesis and the Rule of
Worship"

The apeal to tradition was actually an appeal to the
mind of the church. It was assumed that the church had the knowledge and the
understanding of the truth, that is, the meaning of the revelation.
Accordingly, the church had both the competence and the authority to
proclaim the gospel and to interpret it. This did not imply that the church was
above the Scripture. She stood by the Scripture but, on the other hand, was not
bound by its letter. The ultimate purpose of exegesis and interpretation was to
elicit the meaning and the intent of the Holy Writ, or rather the
meaning of the revelation, of the Heilsgeschichte. The church had to preach
Christ, and not just the Scripture." [1]




[1] pages 104 to 107 by George Florovsky, edited by Daniel B. Clendenin, in the book Eastern Orthodox Theology: A contemporary reader



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« Reply #13 on: May 28, 2010, 03:28:24 PM »

Forgive me, Seafra, but I don't think I understand your post.
You say you believe in Sola Scriptura, but that this doesn't conflict with Holy Tradition. As I understand Orthodoxy (and my understanding is pretty limited so this may be where I'm struggling), there is no suggestion that Holy Tradition conflicts with the Scriptures, but rather expands and helps us to understand them.

That's the first thing I'm confused about. The second thing is, why do you think Orthodox people can't proof-text Scripture to prove their points to Protestants? In my experience, they can.

If you yourself were to quote from Scripture to argue a point of your faith, you might explain what it mean, mightn't you? In my view, Orthodoxy is most convincing to Sola Scriptura adherents when people use Holy Tradition in this way, as another voice explaining Scripture. I'm aware this isn't the full purpose or power of Holy Tradition, but I think it can often be very convincing. What I suppose I'm getting at is, are you saying that you think the Orthodox ought to cite Scripture more because you think Sola Scriptura is better than Holy Tradition, or because it would be a good rhetorical tool against Protestants? If the latter, would that not be self-defeating, since an Orthodox person citing Scripture might convince a Protestant of some detail of faith, but would still need to convince them of the validity or wisdom of Holy Tradition.

Forgive me if I am not being very perceptive here.
Sola-Scriptura in protestant minds does conflict tradition. I was just wanting to see if what i posted was accurate so that in my own protestant mind i have support that its not conflicting. as for quoting scriptures within groups that believe tradition then no there s no reason to do this but if wanting to reach to Protestant groups yes i believe there is a lot more emphasis on the scripture as that is our focus. It has nothing to do with scripture over tradition its simply we do not as a whole believe in tradition so to tell us about what father soandso said a protestant would prob laugh in your face. Personally I believe tradition has merit IN scripture and so i am trying to gather scriptures to present it to those who i know. once yu present the scrptures supporting tradition then by faith on the Word they will believe tradition, at least a sincere believer/seeker of the truth would
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« Reply #14 on: May 28, 2010, 03:43:39 PM »

Forgive me, Seafra, but I don't think I understand your post.
You say you believe in Sola Scriptura, but that this doesn't conflict with Holy Tradition. As I understand Orthodoxy (and my understanding is pretty limited so this may be where I'm struggling), there is no suggestion that Holy Tradition conflicts with the Scriptures, but rather expands and helps us to understand them.

That's the first thing I'm confused about. The second thing is, why do you think Orthodox people can't proof-text Scripture to prove their points to Protestants? In my experience, they can.

If you yourself were to quote from Scripture to argue a point of your faith, you might explain what it mean, mightn't you? In my view, Orthodoxy is most convincing to Sola Scriptura adherents when people use Holy Tradition in this way, as another voice explaining Scripture. I'm aware this isn't the full purpose or power of Holy Tradition, but I think it can often be very convincing. What I suppose I'm getting at is, are you saying that you think the Orthodox ought to cite Scripture more because you think Sola Scriptura is better than Holy Tradition, or because it would be a good rhetorical tool against Protestants? If the latter, would that not be self-defeating, since an Orthodox person citing Scripture might convince a Protestant of some detail of faith, but would still need to convince them of the validity or wisdom of Holy Tradition.

Forgive me if I am not being very perceptive here.
Sola-Scriptura in protestant minds does conflict tradition.

Yes, but the point is, does tradition contradict Sol

I was just wanting to see if what i posted was accurate so that in my own protestant mind i have support that its not conflicting. as for quoting scriptures within groups that believe tradition then no there s no reason to do this but if wanting to reach to Protestant groups yes i believe there is a lot more emphasis on the scripture as that is our focus. It has nothing to do with scripture over tradition its simply we do not as a whole believe in tradition so to tell us about what father soandso said a protestant would prob laugh in your face. Personally I believe tradition has merit IN scripture and so i am trying to gather scriptures to present it to those who i know. once yu present the scrptures supporting tradition then by faith on the Word they will believe tradition, at least a sincere believer/seeker of the truth would
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« Reply #15 on: September 19, 2011, 12:28:20 AM »



I find this image to be spiritually disturbing, theologically disgusting, and intellectually cowardly.
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« Reply #16 on: September 19, 2011, 12:53:49 AM »



I find this image to be spiritually disturbing, theologically disgusting, and intellectually cowardly.
Not everybody is as skilled of a chart-maker as you are.

Also, why did you bump a one-year-old thread? Tongue
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« Reply #17 on: September 19, 2011, 12:59:42 AM »

Not everybody is as skilled of a chart-maker as you are.

Also, why did you bump a one-year-old thread? Tongue

When it comes to bad theology, there is no statute of limitations! Grin
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« Reply #18 on: September 19, 2011, 01:04:26 AM »

Not everybody is as skilled of a chart-maker as you are.

Also, why did you bump a one-year-old thread? Tongue

When it comes to bad theology, there is no statute of limitations! Grin
What problem do you have with the theology of this chart?
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« Reply #19 on: September 19, 2011, 01:16:17 AM »

1) Misleading terminology used when speaking of various things (e.g. Tradition, Scripture, canon law, etc.) in singular and/or plural

(though for the sake of not confusing people, I'll retain the singular or plural form used in the graphic for the rest of this post)

2) Completely confuses and distorts the way that Church, Scripture, and Holy Tradition relate to one another (e.g. distorts the place of Scripture by making it part of Holy Tradition)

3) Distorts Holy Tradition by making it seem like a collection of specifically-spiritual practices and texts

4) I dislike the color
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« Reply #20 on: September 19, 2011, 01:22:31 AM »

1) Misleading terminology used when speaking of various things (e.g. Tradition, Scripture, canon law, etc.) in singular and/or plural

(though for the sake of not confusing people, I'll retain the singular or plural form used in the graphic for the rest of this post)

2) Completely confuses and distorts the way that Church, Scripture, and Holy Tradition relate to one another (e.g. distorts the place of Scripture by making it part of Holy Tradition)

3) Distorts Holy Tradition by making it seem like a collection of specifically-spiritual practices and texts

4) I dislike the color

I don't know if I agree with the bolded part. Were it not for the Tradition which established them as such, the Scriptures would not be considered infallible. The authority of the Scriptures is derived from Tradition, which is why books like the Gospel of Thomas and the Gospel of Judas are not Scripture: they do not agree with Tradition.
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« Reply #21 on: September 19, 2011, 01:28:37 AM »

I don't know if I agree with the bolded part. Were it not for the Tradition which established them as such, the Scriptures would not be considered infallible. The authority of the Scriptures is derived from Tradition, which is why books like the Gospel of Thomas and the Gospel of Judas are not Scripture: they do not agree with Tradition.

I agree that there is some interplay between Tradition and Scripture when it comes to canonicity issues, translation issues, commentary issues, etc. However, I think it is an oversimplication--and a dangerous one--to say that Scripture is merely a part of Tradition. Also, I don't think Scripture is infallible, so...  angel
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« Reply #22 on: September 19, 2011, 01:43:03 AM »

Would you agree that Scripture is a part of Holy Tradition, albeit a very big part?
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« Reply #23 on: September 19, 2011, 01:50:28 AM »

Would you agree that Scripture is a part of Holy Tradition, albeit a very big part?

In a sense I would agree, but I don't think we should oversimplify things. Perhaps this is a sore spot with me because I don't like the way many Catholic/Orthodox epologists use Scripture as bait to reel in Protestant fish.  I think I would be more comfortable with (fancy schmancy) words like "intertwining" or "interpenetrating" when it comes to how Tradition and Scripture relate to each other, as opposed to just saying "Scripture is part of Tradition". Having said that, I am certainly willing to admit that my view on some of these issues are a bit... different... than what I've seen many Orthodox say.  angel
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« Reply #24 on: September 19, 2011, 02:44:52 AM »

I think I can respect your position, at least in as far as I understand it.
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« Reply #25 on: October 21, 2011, 03:16:44 AM »

1) Misleading terminology used when speaking of various things (e.g. Tradition, Scripture, canon law, etc.) in singular and/or plural

(though for the sake of not confusing people, I'll retain the singular or plural form used in the graphic for the rest of this post)

2) Completely confuses and distorts the way that Church, Scripture, and Holy Tradition relate to one another (e.g. distorts the place of Scripture by making it part of Holy Tradition)

3) Distorts Holy Tradition by making it seem like a collection of specifically-spiritual practices and texts

4) I dislike the color


Write your complaint to him:
http://www.amazon.com/Scripture-Tradition-Interpretation-Orthodox-Church/dp/0881412260 (Scripture in Tradition: The Bible and Its Interpretation in the Orthodox Church)


I'm sticking with the Eastern tradition and not the Roman Catholic influence over our churches. And so if you have issue then take it up with all the Orthodox people I quote.


Also, why did you wait a year to say something? Did you think I would not notice your hostile and rude remarks? You like to do hit and runs with me, but if you want to get hostile and rude then I'm all game! Let's go for it!


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« Reply #26 on: October 21, 2011, 03:24:15 AM »

Would you agree that Scripture is a part of Holy Tradition, albeit a very big part?

In a sense I would agree, but I don't think we should oversimplify things. Perhaps this is a sore spot with me because I don't like the way many Catholic/Orthodox epologists use Scripture as bait to reel in Protestant fish.  I think I would be more comfortable with (fancy schmancy) words like "intertwining" or "interpenetrating" when it comes to how Tradition and Scripture relate to each other, as opposed to just saying "Scripture is part of Tradition". Having said that, I am certainly willing to admit that my view on some of these issues are a bit... different... than what I've seen many Orthodox say.  angel

So why the hostility? Why not just say that from the get go? Also, do you believe the Gospels were largely based on the Oral tradition of the Church?

It took decades for them to be written down and so the idea of Scripture IN Tradition is not really overly simplistic, especially when we also talk about the addition of verses and whole chapters to the Scriptures a century or two later as well.

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« Reply #27 on: October 21, 2011, 03:35:01 AM »



I find this image to be spiritually disturbing, theologically disgusting, and intellectually cowardly.

A Baptist seminary student made this picture, but why should I care if you find it spiritually disturbing, theologically disgusting, and intellectually cowardly? Are you the arbiter of Orthodoxy on this issue?

Also, you never flesh out why you say the things you do with me. All you do are hit and runs! All you do is say insulting stuff and you never really explain yourself.

If this is all you are going to do with me then it might be best to keep your personal feelings about my posts to yourself, for I am not the one to be silent! I will fight back!
 
So in the future, if you respond like that to one of my posts, be prepared for a fight! Or else don't respond like that ever again! For I will respond accordingly!


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« Reply #28 on: October 21, 2011, 06:41:54 AM »

I can understand why someone would make an image like this. It's hard to grasp how they relate to each other and if there is an order of weight to any of them. All i've understood so far is that they all have to be understood in the context of each other.

I don't think it's intellectually cowardly or any of the other cheap shots fired. I don't think diagrams like that help as they're too rigid and Orthodoxy seems to be more fluid to me.
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« Reply #29 on: October 21, 2011, 10:59:02 AM »

I don't think diagrams like that help as they're too rigid and Orthodoxy seems to be more fluid to me.

Everything's too interconnected. Whenever I try to make a mental image of how everything in Orthodoxy relates, I get a giant spider web looking thing where everything is connected to everything else with a giant cross in the middle.
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« Reply #30 on: October 21, 2011, 01:01:38 PM »

Would you agree that Scripture is a part of Holy Tradition, albeit a very big part?

In a sense I would agree, but I don't think we should oversimplify things. Perhaps this is a sore spot with me because I don't like the way many Catholic/Orthodox epologists use Scripture as bait to reel in Protestant fish.  I think I would be more comfortable with (fancy schmancy) words like "intertwining" or "interpenetrating" when it comes to how Tradition and Scripture relate to each other, as opposed to just saying "Scripture is part of Tradition". Having said that, I am certainly willing to admit that my view on some of these issues are a bit... different... than what I've seen many Orthodox say.  angel

So why the hostility?
Why the defensiveness?
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« Reply #31 on: October 21, 2011, 05:54:04 PM »

Umm, actually, the diagram is pretty confusing to me. It makes it appear that the various contributors to Tradition have a varying degree of importance, starting from Scripture with the greatest importance and Icons the least.

PP
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« Reply #32 on: October 21, 2011, 06:12:01 PM »

Umm, actually, the diagram is pretty confusing to me. It makes it appear that the various contributors to Tradition have a varying degree of importance, starting from Scripture with the greatest importance and Icons the least.

PP
Proof of my opinion that the diagram means whatever the reader interprets it to mean.
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« Reply #33 on: October 21, 2011, 07:12:38 PM »

Umm, actually, the diagram is pretty confusing to me. It makes it appear that the various contributors to Tradition have a varying degree of importance, starting from Scripture with the greatest importance and Icons the least.

PP
Proof of my opinion that the diagram means whatever the reader interprets it to mean.
Glad I could help Wink
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« Reply #34 on: October 21, 2011, 08:01:42 PM »

One instance in the Greek Orthodox church i have been attending the Issue of hell came up and i hold the same belief of the Orthodox church that hell is in the presence of God but the Father explained it to me without any reference to Scripture. I respect and honor the early fathers but i'm a protestant and that kind of explanation is not going to help me see Orthodox understanding.

Hello to you too. Grin

Orthodoxy is meant to be lived and after a while of being in the "system" one doesn't have to use the bible as a road-map because they are living according to it's beliefs. Just as a carpenter can tell how many nails it would take to frame a shed. His experience tells him without the need to open a book. Wink

Very good point!

This is off topic: Do you call yourself punch as in the cigar?

Both after the cigar that I enjoy, and the curmudgeon that it is named after.  While I tend to prefer the Montecristo Afrique line of cigars, and the Davidoffs, there are times like on warm muggy days that nothing brightens up the World for me like a Punch Gran Puro Santa Rita.

...La Gloria de Cubana , madura wrapper, is a Man's smoke. Romeo y Juliet, Cuban only is also mighty fine.

New thread?
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« Reply #35 on: October 21, 2011, 08:26:30 PM »

Scripture is crystallised tradition. I don't see what's so troubling about that.

The constitution of Australia was promulgated according to the norms of the common law of England. Therefore, the common law predates the constitution, both historically and juridically. For practical purposes, the constitution has now become our starting point and pre-eminent source for answering constitutional questions, with the common law acting as an interpretive aid, but this does not displace the juridical precedence of the common law over the constitution, at least in theory.

The same principle applies to scripture and tradition.
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« Reply #36 on: October 21, 2011, 08:28:58 PM »

1) Misleading terminology used when speaking of various things (e.g. Tradition, Scripture, canon law, etc.) in singular and/or plural

(though for the sake of not confusing people, I'll retain the singular or plural form used in the graphic for the rest of this post)

2) Completely confuses and distorts the way that Church, Scripture, and Holy Tradition relate to one another (e.g. distorts the place of Scripture by making it part of Holy Tradition)

3) Distorts Holy Tradition by making it seem like a collection of specifically-spiritual practices and texts

4) I dislike the color

I don't know if I agree with the bolded part. Were it not for the Tradition which established them as such, the Scriptures would not be considered infallible. The authority of the Scriptures is derived from Tradition, which is why books like the Gospel of Thomas and the Gospel of Judas are not Scripture: they do not agree with Tradition.

I both agree with you and enjoy your colon-use.
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« Reply #37 on: October 23, 2011, 05:56:14 PM »

Would you agree that Scripture is a part of Holy Tradition, albeit a very big part?

In a sense I would agree, but I don't think we should oversimplify things. Perhaps this is a sore spot with me because I don't like the way many Catholic/Orthodox epologists use Scripture as bait to reel in Protestant fish.  I think I would be more comfortable with (fancy schmancy) words like "intertwining" or "interpenetrating" when it comes to how Tradition and Scripture relate to each other, as opposed to just saying "Scripture is part of Tradition". Having said that, I am certainly willing to admit that my view on some of these issues are a bit... different... than what I've seen many Orthodox say.  angel

So why the hostility?
Why the defensiveness?

Because he didn't have to respond like that. It's one thing to disagree with someone but another to do so with malice. And so if he wants to come at me like that then he needs to know that turning the other cheek is not something I will always do for Sometimes I will snap back.
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« Reply #38 on: October 23, 2011, 09:17:57 PM »

Would you agree that Scripture is a part of Holy Tradition, albeit a very big part?

In a sense I would agree, but I don't think we should oversimplify things. Perhaps this is a sore spot with me because I don't like the way many Catholic/Orthodox epologists use Scripture as bait to reel in Protestant fish.  I think I would be more comfortable with (fancy schmancy) words like "intertwining" or "interpenetrating" when it comes to how Tradition and Scripture relate to each other, as opposed to just saying "Scripture is part of Tradition". Having said that, I am certainly willing to admit that my view on some of these issues are a bit... different... than what I've seen many Orthodox say.  angel

So why the hostility?
Why the defensiveness?

Because he didn't have to respond like that. It's one thing to disagree with someone but another to do so with malice.
What concerns me, though, is that the malice you see appears to be merely a projection of your own perceptions and not a characteristic of Asteriktos's post. Rather than automatically launch into a hostile defense of yourself against such perceived hostility, maybe you would do better to actually ask the other person (in this case, Asteriktos) what he meant by his statements.

And so if he wants to come at me like that then he needs to know that turning the other cheek is not something I will always do for Sometimes I will snap back.
When you snap back, make sure you're at least responding to a REAL motive and not to a motive you've projected onto your "opponent".
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« Reply #39 on: October 24, 2011, 12:29:26 AM »

If Scripture 'twined with Tradition we need,
And by means of Sola Scriptura concluded
We must hold to Tradition firmly rooted,
(For to build anew is surely deluded)
And regard with joy faith undiluted;
Is Sola Scriptura still our creed?

---pardon my bad poetry.
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« Reply #40 on: October 24, 2011, 12:40:59 AM »



I find this image to be spiritually disturbing, theologically disgusting, and intellectually cowardly.
Not everybody is as skilled of a chart-maker as you are.

Also, why did you bump a one-year-old thread? Tongue

Ugly chart, but the way some folks ought to be turning their heads. They tend to have it upside down. Flipped-flopped or whatever.

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« Reply #41 on: October 24, 2011, 12:43:08 AM »

1) Misleading terminology used when speaking of various things (e.g. Tradition, Scripture, canon law, etc.) in singular and/or plural

(though for the sake of not confusing people, I'll retain the singular or plural form used in the graphic for the rest of this post)

2) Completely confuses and distorts the way that Church, Scripture, and Holy Tradition relate to one another (e.g. distorts the place of Scripture by making it part of Holy Tradition)

3) Distorts Holy Tradition by making it seem like a collection of specifically-spiritual practices and texts

4) I dislike the color


Write your complaint to him:
http://www.amazon.com/Scripture-Tradition-Interpretation-Orthodox-Church/dp/0881412260 (Scripture in Tradition: The Bible and Its Interpretation in the Orthodox Church)


I'm sticking with the Eastern tradition and not the Roman Catholic influence over our churches. And so if you have issue then take it up with all the Orthodox people I quote.


Also, why did you wait a year to say something? Did you think I would not notice your hostile and rude remarks? You like to do hit and runs with me, but if you want to get hostile and rude then I'm all game! Let's go for it!




Recommended text for those who are interested where Patristic hermeneutics will be going and ought to be going.

Sorta disjointed as an entire text, but good stuff nevertheless for the lay person.
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« Reply #42 on: October 24, 2011, 12:46:07 AM »

1) Misleading terminology used when speaking of various things (e.g. Tradition, Scripture, canon law, etc.) in singular and/or plural

(though for the sake of not confusing people, I'll retain the singular or plural form used in the graphic for the rest of this post)

2) Completely confuses and distorts the way that Church, Scripture, and Holy Tradition relate to one another (e.g. distorts the place of Scripture by making it part of Holy Tradition)

3) Distorts Holy Tradition by making it seem like a collection of specifically-spiritual practices and texts

4) I dislike the color

I don't know if I agree with the bolded part. Were it not for the Tradition which established them as such, the Scriptures would not be considered infallible. The authority of the Scriptures is derived from Tradition, which is why books like the Gospel of Thomas and the Gospel of Judas are not Scripture: they do not agree with Tradition.

Tradition and Scripture is a false dichotomy.

Each give rise to the other. Ain't no other way. No scripture, no Tradition. No Tradition, no Scripture.

And I am out.
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« Reply #43 on: October 24, 2011, 01:04:30 AM »

Would you agree that Scripture is a part of Holy Tradition, albeit a very big part?

In a sense I would agree, but I don't think we should oversimplify things. Perhaps this is a sore spot with me because I don't like the way many Catholic/Orthodox epologists use Scripture as bait to reel in Protestant fish.  I think I would be more comfortable with (fancy schmancy) words like "intertwining" or "interpenetrating" when it comes to how Tradition and Scripture relate to each other, as opposed to just saying "Scripture is part of Tradition". Having said that, I am certainly willing to admit that my view on some of these issues are a bit... different... than what I've seen many Orthodox say.  angel

So why the hostility?
Why the defensiveness?

Because he didn't have to respond like that. It's one thing to disagree with someone but another to do so with malice.
What concerns me, though, is that the malice you see appears to be merely a projection of your own perceptions and not a characteristic of Asteriktos's post. Rather than automatically launch into a hostile defense of yourself against such perceived hostility, maybe you would do better to actually ask the other person (in this case, Asteriktos) what he meant by his statements.

And so if he wants to come at me like that then he needs to know that turning the other cheek is not something I will always do for Sometimes I will snap back.
When you snap back, make sure you're at least responding to a REAL motive and not to a motive you've projected onto your "opponent".

Granted
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« Reply #44 on: October 24, 2011, 01:05:54 AM »

Asteriktos,


What did you mean by your statement?
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« Reply #45 on: October 24, 2011, 05:08:41 AM »



I find this image to be spiritually disturbing, theologically disgusting, and intellectually cowardly.

A Baptist seminary student made this picture, but why should I care if you find it spiritually disturbing, theologically disgusting, and intellectually cowardly? Are you the arbiter of Orthodoxy on this issue?

Also, you never flesh out why you say the things you do with me. All you do are hit and runs! All you do is say insulting stuff and you never really explain yourself.

If this is all you are going to do with me then it might be best to keep your personal feelings about my posts to yourself, for I am not the one to be silent! I will fight back!
 
So in the future, if you respond like that to one of my posts, be prepared for a fight! Or else don't respond like that ever again! For I will respond accordingly!



Are you one of those types that complains that having Parafin candles instead of Beeswax aint Orthodox?
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« Reply #46 on: October 24, 2011, 04:42:33 PM »



I find this image to be spiritually disturbing, theologically disgusting, and intellectually cowardly.

A Baptist seminary student made this picture, but why should I care if you find it spiritually disturbing, theologically disgusting, and intellectually cowardly? Are you the arbiter of Orthodoxy on this issue?

Also, you never flesh out why you say the things you do with me. All you do are hit and runs! All you do is say insulting stuff and you never really explain yourself.

If this is all you are going to do with me then it might be best to keep your personal feelings about my posts to yourself, for I am not the one to be silent! I will fight back!
 
So in the future, if you respond like that to one of my posts, be prepared for a fight! Or else don't respond like that ever again! For I will respond accordingly!



Are you one of those types that complains that having Parafin candles instead of Beeswax aint Orthodox?

What kind of question is that? Out of my two thousand and plus posts on this forum, did you ever see me complain about that?

Now, are you one of those types that like to annoy people for no reason at all?
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« Reply #47 on: October 24, 2011, 06:07:16 PM »

Cool it, both of you!
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« Reply #48 on: October 26, 2011, 07:40:26 AM »

Here's what I don't get. I'm watching Lee Strobel's Case for Christ movie but in this entire movie it discusses the New Testament and it's authority, authenticity blah blah blah...but nothing on the actual Church that was founded by God Himself. I never understand these Protestant apologetics, wouldn't the best defense of the faith be the actual Church that was established but of course you'd cease to be a Protestant at that point. And these apologetics just beg the question on whom discerned that these documents are authentic, it comes down to a bunch of scholarly theologians say these are authentic because they match the conservative view of Jesus.

Sola Scriptura never made sense to me in a historical sense.
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« Reply #49 on: October 26, 2011, 09:40:14 AM »

Here's what I don't get. I'm watching Lee Strobel's Case for Christ movie but in this entire movie it discusses the New Testament and it's authority, authenticity blah blah blah...but nothing on the actual Church that was founded by God Himself. I never understand these Protestant apologetics
That's exactly what's stumped me as i've been reading through some of this. I have never heard any preaching or teaching that there was ever another style of church that existed other than Catholics and Protestants. The authority and authenticity is taught and then the church grew from that upper room into what Protestants have today. It's stumped me because i can see from even the most basic of reading i've done that there's evidence to suggest otherwise.
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« Reply #50 on: October 26, 2011, 11:00:26 AM »

Here's what I don't get. I'm watching Lee Strobel's Case for Christ movie but in this entire movie it discusses the New Testament and it's authority, authenticity blah blah blah...but nothing on the actual Church that was founded by God Himself. I never understand these Protestant apologetics
That's exactly what's stumped me as i've been reading through some of this. I have never heard any preaching or teaching that there was ever another style of church that existed other than Catholics and Protestants. The authority and authenticity is taught and then the church grew from that upper room into what Protestants have today. It's stumped me because i can see from even the most basic of reading i've done that there's evidence to suggest otherwise.

Hence the term sola imagination so eloquently phrased by some on this board. The sola scriptura view does not hold up to even the lightest of challenges. Historically speaking, its a recent fad.

PP
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"I confidently affirm that whoever calls himself Universal Bishop is the precursor of Antichrist"
Gregory the Great

"Never, never, never let anyone tell you that, in order to be Orthodox, you must also be eastern." St. John Maximovitch, The Wonderworker
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