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Author Topic: John of Damascus' exegesis of De 4:15 is impossible  (Read 36751 times) Average Rating: 5
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Alfred Persson
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« Reply #675 on: August 11, 2010, 10:57:08 PM »

Maybe they don't hear my dog barking because he's quiet and well-behaved.

I thought you shook the dust off your feet...without strawberries no less.

Even if he is quiet and well behaved, people will still step in his poop when they barbecue in the yard, and their comments will be known.

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« Reply #676 on: August 11, 2010, 11:01:17 PM »

That is why the lack of testimony for icons in the early church  is probative.

Unlike sola scriptura, there is no lack of testimony for icons in the early church.

Where? No icons are mentioned in those fathers directly after the apostles, none, zero.

Sola scriptura is taught, but to speak of that now is to change the subject away from the very embarrassing fact (for you) that icon veneration is completely absent in both the Bible AND the earliest church fathers.

That it developed centuries later I freely admit, but that apostasy is irrelevant to what the apostles taught.




According to your logic if I do not mention that I have a dog, then I must not have a dog. I am sure my wife would be sad to hear that as she is rather attached to our dog that does not exist...

Or if I do not mention that I have a computer (though evidence suggest otherwise) then I must not have a computer and these post are here by revisionist history alone.

You misstated my reasons. More accurate: If you have a dog then your neighbors hear it barking often, if they never hear barking, its likely you don't have a dog.

So also icon veneration, where there is icon veneration, there is "barking" about it, where barking is not heard, there is no icon veneration.

Therefore the apostolic church did not venerate icons.

But what if I have a bark collar on my dog and have him trained to use a litter box? Then the neighbors do not hear him nor do they even see him out in the yard. If I had the neighbors over and they saw my dog they might pass down the story of my litter box trained dog to their children and so on until not a single eye witness is alive, but the story still remained. This does not make the story false, rather it just means there are no eye witnesses left. And again, the Ethiopian church does not "bark" about their icons being venerated, yet still they do it.

Prove to me that there was no text that has become lost to time describing that the Apostles and early Fathers did venerate icons and I would believe you. Just because there is no record of it now does not mean there was no record of it then.

I am done for the night. I have to get up and go venerate another deceased Veteran tomorrow (who by the way was made in God's image and is an icon thereof).
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« Reply #677 on: August 11, 2010, 11:01:24 PM »

Nonsense, my dog doesn't poop anywhwere near the BBQ - and Christians who venerated icons were so comon there was no need for anyone to comment about it till the iconoclast neighbors started complaining.  Grumpy Mr. Wilson types who hate dogs - er, icons Smiley .
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« Reply #678 on: August 11, 2010, 11:01:59 PM »



"Doctrine which ye have learned", the action is completed in Paul's time.

Therefore doctrines which arose centuries later are not apostolic and all who practice things not taught by  the apostles, are not apostolic.



Interesting: you remind me of the Jehovah's Witness fellow who came over to my front porch a month ago. Just as dogmatic, close-minded and wrong, but with triple the attitude.

I should remind you of James, he says there was only ONE delivery of the truth, not multiple deliveries over the centuries to come:

NKJ  Jude 1:3 Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints. (Jud 1:3 NKJ)

Contend for the faith that already existed in his day...the ONE delivery was past...not in the novelties that would spring up centuries later by oddly dressed men.

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« Reply #679 on: August 11, 2010, 11:03:15 PM »

(sorry about the typos, I'm back on the cell phone!)  Yes, I did shake off the dust, Alfred, but it just keeps coming back!  Cheesy
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« Reply #680 on: August 11, 2010, 11:07:26 PM »

Nonsense, my dog doesn't poop anywhwere near the BBQ - and Christians who venerated icons were so comon there was no need for anyone to comment about it till the iconoclast neighbors started complaining.  Grumpy Mr. Wilson types who hate dogs - er, icons Smiley .

The female Denis the Menace, somehow that fits.

But it was the other way around, the iconoclasts had nothing to complain about at first, the new neighbors seemed to be like them. But as time when on, they began violating the zoning laws with their images...only then did they realize they waited too long.
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« Reply #681 on: August 11, 2010, 11:09:02 PM »

  "At the time when our Lord preached the Good News and healed every illness and infirmity of men, there lived in the city of Edessa on the shore of the Euphrates Prince Abgar who was completely infected with leprosy. He heard of Christ, the Healer of every pain and disease and sent an artist, Ananias, to Palestine with a letter to Christ in which he begged the Lord to come to Edessa and to cure him of leprosy. In the event that the Lord was unable to come, the prince ordered Ananias to portray His likeness and to bring it to him, believing that this likeness would be able to restore his health. The Lord answered that He was unable to come, for the time of His passion was approaching took a towel, wiped His face and, on the towel, His All-pure face was perfectly pictured. The Lord gave this towel to Ananias with the message that the prince will be healed by it, but not entirely, and later on, He would send him a messenger who would erase the remainder of his disease. Receiving the towel, Prince Abgar kissed it and the leprosy completely fell from his body but a little of it remained on his face. Later, the Apostle Thaddaeus, preaching the Gospel, came to Abgar and secretly healed and baptized him. The prince then destroyed the idols which stood before the gates of the city and above the gates he placed the towel with the likeness of Christ attached to wood, framed in a gold frame and adorned with pearls. Also, the prince wrote beneath the icon on the gates: "O Christ God, no one will be ashamed who hopes in You." For many years after King Abgar's reign, Edessa remained a faithful Christian city. However, when one of Abgar's great grandsons restored idolatry, the bishop of Edessa came by night and secretly walled up the miraculous icon over the gates. Many believed the icon to have been destroyed by the new idolatrous king and the icon was soon forgotten; even though it was to remain safely hidden within the walls for nearly 400 years. In 545 AD, during the reign of Emperor Justinian, the Persian King Chozroes attacked Edessa and the city was in great hardship. It happened that Eulabius, the Bishop of Edessa, had a vision in which was revealed to him the mystery of the sealed wall and the forgotten icon. The icon was discovered and, by its power, the Persian army was defeated. After that it stayed in Edessa for a long time, and many famous people from history came to see it. In the year 944 AD, it was taken to the city of Constantinople and placed in a church, where it remained until 1204 AD, when the Crusaders carried it off. The miraculous icon was never seen again."

taken from web page of Christ the Savior Orthodox Church Delmarva.
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« Reply #682 on: August 11, 2010, 11:11:57 PM »


Quote
So you admit your icons are of Christ's flesh only, not the whole Christ, for then you must include His transcendent nature. Nestorian error.

Ever looked at an icon of Christ, Alfred? Noticed the halo around His head? Noticed the Greek letters O W N in that halo? What do think those letters mean?  Exodus 3:14, Luke 22:70, John 8:58, John 13:19, for starters.

What is your answer to this, Alfred?

You prove icons teach the illiterate lies about God, they won't know what those letters are either...they will assume the whole God is being represented by the one icon, which is monophysite heresy.



You still haven't answered the question, Alfred. What does the halo surrounding Christ's head mean, and the letters in that halo mean? Don't be lazy, I've already given several scripture references to help you.
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« Reply #683 on: August 11, 2010, 11:13:40 PM »

Problem is, Alfred, the iconoclasts you revere so much showed their disapproval nor only by destroying the icons - but also those who venerated them.  Are those your heroes?
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« Reply #684 on: August 11, 2010, 11:17:46 PM »

Well we can go one step further than icon veneration and find that relic veneration was practiced by the early Christians. In the martyrdom of Polycarp (2nd c.) it is stated that the devil, "...proceeded to do his best to arrainge that at least we should not get possession of his (St. Polycarp's) mortal remains, although numbers of us were anxious to do this and to claim our share in the hallowed relics." Tertullian asserts that St. Polycarp was appointed by the apostle St. John, he was known by St. Ignatius (who was known by St.Paul), and highly revered by St. Irenaeus whose words our inquisitor has used in attemp to undermine holy tradtion. So what does he know from the Bible of what is holy tradition vs. the tradition of man?

Only proves we cannot go far from the apostles, if we are to learn what they  believed.

"Claim our share," neither can the ghoulish practice of dismembering the dead be found in the New Testament.  When Jesus died, they no one "claimed their share" of body  parts. When James was stoned, same thing. Not once in the NT do we see the ghoulish superstition.

That Polycarp is relevant to what the apostles taught is not disputed, someone writing about him in the 2nd century, is.



All proper Christian burial would be observed since apostolic Christians administered the rite. since St. Polycarp died in the 2nd c. the authentic eyewitness account was written then & preserved in the apostolic tradition. Your earler claims of us (meaning those who you perceive as being apostolic) are faulty, unsupported by sources, & only relies on how you interpret scripture.

Its hearsay, unreliable.

What they believed does not prove what Polycarp believed and certainly not what the apostles taught.
Lets see you claim to be in apostolic sucession & yet say that someone (me) who finds an apostolic source as evidence of a veneration practice by apostolic Christians of the remains a martyred apsotolic Christian & that I trust these people as observing proper Christian burial rite as relying on unreliable hearsay?

The Church is Apostolic (ecclesia apostolica) inasmuch as all its members to the Last Day come to faith in Christ through the Word of the Apostles (John 17:20: πιστεύσοντες διὰ λόγου αὐτῶν εἰς ἐμέ) and cling to the Word of the Apostles (Acts 2:42: προσκαρτεροῦντες τῇ διδαχῇ τῶν ἀποστόλων), and this over against all departures from the truth of Scripture. Rom. 16:17: “Avoid them,” namely, those who “cause divisions and offenses contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned.”

Pieper, F. (1999). Vol. 3: Christian Dogmatics (electronic ed.) (411). St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House.



"Doctrine which ye have learned", the action is completed in Paul's time.

Therefore doctrines which arose centuries later are not apostolic and all who practice things not taught by  the apostles, are not apostolic.


Relying on a Lutheran theologian's definition of "Apostolic" to tell us Orthodox what "Apostolic" means?  Particularly when the St. Irenaeus whom you love to quote gave us this definition:

It is within the power of all, therefore, in every Church, who may wish to see the truth, to contemplate clearly the tradition of the apostles manifested throughout the whole world; and we are in a position to reckon up those who were by the apostles instituted bishops in the Churches, and [to demonstrate] the succession of these men to our own times; those who neither taught nor knew of anything like what these [heretics] rave about. For if the apostles had known hidden mysteries, which they were in the habit of imparting to “the perfect” apart and privily from the rest, they would have delivered them especially to those to whom they were also committing the Churches themselves. For they were desirous that these men should be very perfect and blameless in all things, whom also they were leaving behind as their successors, delivering up their own place of government to these men; which men, if they discharged their functions honestly, would be a great boon [to the Church], but if they should fall away, the direst calamity.
St. Irenaeus:  Against Heresies, Book III, Chapter 3, Paragraph 1  (from http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf01.ix.iv.iv.html)

I will concede that St. Irenaeus certainly supports Dr. Pieper's and your definition of "Apostolic", since the saint identified doctrine as Apostolic if it was what the Apostles taught, but I would suggest that Dr. Pieper's definition of "Apostolic" is incomplete.  To Irenaeus, the visible succession of bishops from the Apostles was just as much a witness to Apostolicity of a doctrine as the fact that the doctrine was learned from the Apostles themselves.  And, just as St. Ignatius of Antioch taught his flocks to do everything in union with their bishops lest they fall prey to the heretics, so did Irenaeus declare that the truth of doctrine could be ascertained by the fact that those bishops who taught the doctrine were verifiable successors to the Apostles.  If you are not in communion with these bishops, how can you know that your doctrine is Apostolic?


Given the absence of icon veneration in Irenaeus, his words are quite damaging your argument.

Your exegesis of his words fails, you confuse the mechanism with the operator. Irenaeus extols succession, but only to support his claim apostolic truth is being taught in the Universal ("Catholic") Church). When he says "Thus saith the Catholic church" he does not mean "this is the truth invented by the church," his meaning is "as this teaching is found in all the churches, it must have been planted by the apostles, otherwise, if it were a novelty, then only a few churches would believe it."

His argument fails the test of time, scripture and history proves it wrong.

If I could read the New Testament, and then go to an Orthodox church without being surprised by anything there, THEN its apostolic.

No one reading the New Testament alone, can predict what they will find when they go to either a Catholic or an Orthodox church....these are too different.

That proves your churches are not apostolic, even if you have a succession of bishops...which I really doubt, but will concede for the sake of this argument only.

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« Reply #685 on: August 11, 2010, 11:21:57 PM »

Problem is, Alfred, the iconoclasts you revere so much showed their disapproval nor only by destroying the icons - but also those who venerated them.  Are those your heroes?

No, not at all. My heroes are in the Bible, but I will include Athanasius, an exception.

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« Reply #686 on: August 11, 2010, 11:22:48 PM »

lol ... so what, the NT church resembled a Rick Warren style megachurch?
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« Reply #687 on: August 11, 2010, 11:30:22 PM »

That there were pictures in the catacombs etc begs the question whether these were worshiped,

No, it answers the questions whether the Chrisitans had images in their places of worship (besides the obvious, the inscriptions and literary evidence show worship is what was going on in the catacombs).  Your Protestant forebares denied their existence when they were creating the church from whence you come, but then in the 17th century the catacombs were rediscovered, and exposed your forebares' fallacy.

Then your Protestant forebares fell back on the waving the veil of Moses, claiming that the Jews don't have images, and so the early Christians didn't either.  But now we have unearthed early synagogues, and they are covered in images.  So much for that.

So now you are left begging the question that the early Christians had no images, with no evidence.  Christ said the gates of Hell would not prevail against His Church, the pillar and bulwark of Truth.  All those early Churches uncovered have images that cover them.  Either call Christ a liar as His Church fell prey to Satan, and hence nothing He said 2,000 years ago has no relevance to us today.

Btw, I was talking to someone about the Chapel at Fort Ross, the first Orthodox parish in the lower 48.  If you look inside it today, you might conclude that the early Orhtodox in this country had no images:

(the icons in the cabinet on the walls are period IIRC, but recently restored)
There is almost no description of the Chapel's inside. After all, most at Fort Ross had seen the inside of a Russian Church. THere is more detailed descriptions of the governor and manager's home (which also include the icons that were in the rooms, something different for American and Western European visitors).  When the Russians evacuated, they told everything with them to the Cathedral in Sitka, except a lectern, the candlelabra and candle stand.  

[/quote]

I see two icons behind the lectern, on the wall.
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« Reply #688 on: August 11, 2010, 11:38:47 PM »

We have, from tradition, the Apostle Luke painting several icons as well.

Without proof, you have nothing.

The fact copies of Luke's gospel never had icons is an overwhelming mass of irrefutable evidence the autograph didn't have them either.

What icon venerating Orthodox Christian would fail to copy Luke's icons perfectly, so that every extent copy had icons?

So your argument icon veneration was practiced by Luke fails on many levels, but most importantly, where it matters, you have no proof, therefore you have nothing, only a claim.





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« Reply #689 on: August 11, 2010, 11:40:39 PM »

lol ... so what, the NT church resembled a Rick Warren style megachurch?

No, most were like a Bible study in a house:

NKJ  Romans 16:5 Likewise greet the church that is in their house. (Rom 16:5 NKJ)

I recall bumming for change in San Diego, so I could get high when a group of Christians offered me shelter and food. I surprisingly went with them. There, this vagabond group, led by a Matriarch, held Bible study and witnessed to the love of Jesus.

I recall wanting to put my hands over my ears to not hear...I wanted to run...the conviction of the Holy Spirit was strong...years later I repented and believed.

But I remember them, they were precisely like the apostolic church:

KJV  2 John 1:1 The elder unto the elect lady and her children, whom I love in the truth; and not I only, but also all they that have known the truth; (2Jo 1:1 KJV)


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« Reply #690 on: August 11, 2010, 11:43:29 PM »

Quote
I see two icons behind the lectern, on the wall.

This is yet more evidence that you ignore what people are saying in their posts. ialmisry did indeed state in this post:the icons in the cabinet on the walls are period IIRC, but recently restored

We are spoonfeeding you, yet you keep shutting your mouth to the spoon.



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« Reply #691 on: August 11, 2010, 11:46:08 PM »

Ancient Christians  did/did not_________ (fill in the blank)! Proof otherwise using Scripture. WHat a wonderful and pointless game.
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« Reply #692 on: August 11, 2010, 11:49:26 PM »


Quote
So you admit your icons are of Christ's flesh only, not the whole Christ, for then you must include His transcendent nature. Nestorian error.

Ever looked at an icon of Christ, Alfred? Noticed the halo around His head? Noticed the Greek letters O W N in that halo? What do think those letters mean?  Exodus 3:14, Luke 22:70, John 8:58, John 13:19, for starters.

What is your answer to this, Alfred?

You prove icons teach the illiterate lies about God, they won't know what those letters are either...they will assume the whole God is being represented by the one icon, which is monophysite heresy.

Mr. Persson, you are just further showing that you throw terms around without knowing what they mean.  Eutyches taught that Christ's human nature was absorbed and dissolved in the Divine nature as a drop of vinegar in the ocean,
http://www.copticchurch.net/topics/theology/nature_of_christ.pdf
despite the teaching of the Church that He is True God and True man in one Person unmingled and undivided, based on the preaching of the Apostles that in Christ "the fullness of Godhead dwellt by the good pleasure of the Father." Col. 1:19, a teaching you also deny.

Since we have seen vocabulary problems:
fullnessPronunciation:/ˈfʊlnɪs/(also fulness)noun [mass noun] 1 the state of being filled to capacity:scores of tins in different states of fullness;  the state of having eaten enough or more than enough and feeling full up; the state of being complete or whole:the honesty and fullness of the information they provide....OED (I don't have my Webster's handy, but Oxford is more useful for your KJV).

So the fullness of Godhead dwelling in Him means the whole Godhead dwellt among us, which is why He says "He Who sees Me sees the Father." John 14:9.

Eutyches' heresy died out, but if it had survived like Nestorius', it may have come to iconoclasm as you have: icon's can't portray humanity dissolved into divinity. Though of course, the quesiton would be how come Christ wasn't invisible to the Apostles, as the Apostles no doubt could not see a drop of vinegar dissolved in the ocean, let alone a finite man dissovled in the infinite God.  So like you, they would deny the Apostles' preaching Christ "the icon of the invisible God." Col. 1:5. As St. John gave voice to the Apostolic teaching:
Quote
An image is a likeness of the original with a certain difference, for it is not an exact reproduction of the original. Thus, the Son is the living, substantial, unchangeable Image of the invisible God, bearing in Himself the whole Father, being in all things equal to Him, differing only in being begotten by the Father, who is the Begetter ; the Son is begotten. The Father does not proceed from the Son, but the Son from the Father. It is through the Son, though not after Him, that He is what He is, the Father who generates. In God, too, there are representations and images of His future acts,—that is to say, His counsel from all eternity, which is ever unchangeable. That which is divine is immutable; there is no change in Him, nor shadow of change.
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« Reply #693 on: August 11, 2010, 11:53:34 PM »


But history is clear, icon veneration is a non apostolic practice.


But, the One, Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church of which you have no part says that it is. Really, you have no argument. If it were only the veneration of icons that you reject, we might be able to have a conversation. But you have shown here that you reject far more than that, so we really have no common ground to start from.

Its elementary deduction, as human nature does not allow the Orthodox religion be silent about icon veneration, wherever human religion is silent about icons, they aren't like the Orthodox.

The church seen in the pages of the New Testament is silent about icons, therefore it isn't like the Orthodox.

Indeed, the silence about icon veneration in the Bible is an overwhelming mass of irrefutable evidence they didn't practice it, given the heat and froth of the Orthodox manifest on this thread.






Indeed, the silence about computer usage in the Bible is an overwhelming mass of irrefutable evidence they didn't practice it, given the heat and froth of the Persson manifest on this thread. Computers aren't in the Bible, so why do you use theme? Televisions aren't either, nor are newspapers or radios. How can you use them if they aren't mentioned in the Bible? I hope you don't have any cats or dogs as pets. Where does the Bible discuss having pets?

Do you see how silly it is to point to the Bible as a justification for any ol' belief? As Isa said in another thread, you have the car manual, but not the car. You can't get anywhere.

Are you familiar with the term prelest?

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« Reply #694 on: August 11, 2010, 11:57:13 PM »

lol ... so what, the NT church resembled a Rick Warren style megachurch?

No, most were like a Bible study in a house:

NKJ  Romans 16:5 Likewise greet the church that is in their house. (Rom 16:5 NKJ)


I'm trying to picture it.  You are saying that people would sit together in a room, with each person having a Bible as we know it today, (in the form of a codex) on their lap, taking turns reading passages and discussing and interpreting the passages?

That's a bit different from the early accounts of Christian house church worship.  I'm thinking of  Hyppolytus.  
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« Reply #695 on: August 11, 2010, 11:57:30 PM »

 "At the time when our Lord preached the Good News and healed every illness and infirmity of men, there lived in the city of Edessa on the shore of the Euphrates Prince Abgar who was completely infected with leprosy. He heard of Christ, the Healer of every pain and disease and sent an artist, Ananias, to Palestine with a letter to Christ in which he begged the Lord to come to Edessa and to cure him of leprosy. In the event that the Lord was unable to come, the prince ordered Ananias to portray His likeness and to bring it to him, believing that this likeness would be able to restore his health. The Lord answered that He was unable to come, for the time of His passion was approaching took a towel, wiped His face and, on the towel, His All-pure face was perfectly pictured. The Lord gave this towel to Ananias with the message that the prince will be healed by it, but not entirely, and later on, He would send him a messenger who would erase the remainder of his disease. Receiving the towel, Prince Abgar kissed it and the leprosy completely fell from his body but a little of it remained on his face. Later, the Apostle Thaddaeus, preaching the Gospel, came to Abgar and secretly healed and baptized him. The prince then destroyed the idols which stood before the gates of the city and above the gates he placed the towel with the likeness of Christ attached to wood, framed in a gold frame and adorned with pearls. Also, the prince wrote beneath the icon on the gates: "O Christ God, no one will be ashamed who hopes in You." For many years after King Abgar's reign, Edessa remained a faithful Christian city. However, when one of Abgar's great grandsons restored idolatry, the bishop of Edessa came by night and secretly walled up the miraculous icon over the gates. Many believed the icon to have been destroyed by the new idolatrous king and the icon was soon forgotten; even though it was to remain safely hidden within the walls for nearly 400 years. In 545 AD, during the reign of Emperor Justinian, the Persian King Chozroes attacked Edessa and the city was in great hardship. It happened that Eulabius, the Bishop of Edessa, had a vision in which was revealed to him the mystery of the sealed wall and the forgotten icon. The icon was discovered and, by its power, the Persian army was defeated. After that it stayed in Edessa for a long time, and many famous people from history came to see it. In the year 944 AD, it was taken to the city of Constantinople and placed in a church, where it remained until 1204 AD, when the Crusaders carried it off. The miraculous icon was never seen again."

taken from web page of Christ the Savior Orthodox Church Delmarva.

Why do miracles impress you?


Surely you know this text:

NKJ  Matthew 24:24 "For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect.
 (Mat 24:24 NKJ)

You also know that Christian like miracles occur through antichrists:

 22 "Many will say to Me in that day,`Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?'
 23 "And then I will declare to them,`I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!'
 (Mat 7:22-23 NKJ)

You also know spirits can works miracles:

NKJ  Revelation 16:14 For they are spirits of demons, performing signs, w (Rev 16:14 NKJ)

 9 The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders,
 10 and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
 (2Th 2:9-10 NKJ)


It is written:


NKJ  Deuteronomy 13:1 "If there arises among you a prophet or a dreamer of dreams, and he gives you a sign or a wonder,

 2 "and the sign or the wonder comes to pass, of which he spoke to you, saying,`Let us go after other gods'-- which you have not known--`and let us serve them,'

 3 "you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams, for the LORD your God is testing you to know whether you love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.

 4 "You shall walk after the LORD your God and fear Him, and keep His commandments and obey His voice, and you shall serve Him and hold fast to Him.

 (Deu 13:1-4 NKJ)

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« Reply #696 on: August 12, 2010, 12:02:34 AM »

lol ... so what, the NT church resembled a Rick Warren style megachurch?

No, most were like a Bible study in a house:

NKJ  Romans 16:5 Likewise greet the church that is in their house. (Rom 16:5 NKJ)


I'm trying to picture it.  You are saying that people would sit together in a room, with each person having a Bible as we know it today, (in the form of a codex) on their lap, taking turns reading passages and discussing and interpreting the passages?

That's a bit different from the early accounts of Christian house church worship.  I'm thinking of  Hyppolytus.  

This is before him. They would have some scripture, not a Bible because only the rich could afford it. Fragments of a book most likely, that they exchanged with other churches, at first. Of course as time went on, they got bigger and more scripture.

BUT we should never forget, Paul often fellowshiped in homes where the church of 10 or so people, met.

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« Reply #697 on: August 12, 2010, 12:06:44 AM »

Well, there are usually less than 20 people at the Romanian Catholi mission I sometimes attend ... it is definitely nice to worship Christ in such an intimate setting. Smiley
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« Reply #698 on: August 12, 2010, 12:14:43 AM »

No, most were like a Bible study in a house.

Have you looked at the archeological evidence which shows the layout of early house-churches? They were set up for liturgical worship. If they were sitting around having Bible studies which might resemble what many Protestants do today, how were they understanding the texts they were looking at? Who was guiding them in their exegesis?

They certainly were not letting the Scripture interpret itself, as the communities only had some, not all of the later-canonized New Testament writings. They were reading some gospels, some epistles, and what you would likely consider a bunch of superstitious fantasy, like the Acts of Paul and Thecla. I would actually be suspicious of Orthodoxy and Roman Catholicism if they lacked any references in their tradition to such works, as they themselves were a part of the life of the Church. Through its liturgical life, the Church has commemorated and preserved many of these stories within the tradition, at least those which were true and beneficial for the flock.

So anyway, the point is that they certainly would have been studying the Septuagint, which we still use in perfect continuity with not only the early Church but also with the LORD Christ, St. Paul and all of the New Testament quotations of the Old Testament. But beyond that they were confined to regional and communal texts, and there was a lot of ambiguity surrounding what were to be considered authoritative writings. Even if every house church had been full of literate Christians (which they were not), who all carried around pocket-sized Septuagints (which they didn't), they still would have looked to their bishop to teach them what they learned from the apostles. They would certainly not have looked to themselves for an authoritative interpretation. Those who did where infamous. They were the heretics.
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« Reply #699 on: August 12, 2010, 12:54:43 AM »

There is no evidence the early church practiced icon veneration, the absence of any mention of it is inexplicable if they practiced icon veneration like the Orthodox, for the latter can hardly restrain themselves from writing about it----therefore the lack of writing about it indicates they did not practice icon veneration.
Hasty and anachronistic generalization.  You're drawing conclusions about the Early Church from the practice of the Church today without accounting for the differences between the specific circumstances the Early Church faced and the specific circumstances today's Church faces.
and do the homework needed to construct a much more cogent argument, then maybe I'll listen to you.  Right now, you're just babbling incoherently.

Your objection is specious, there is nothing different about human nature, that hasn't changed.

You might want to edit this.

Why, its a cogent argument. Human nature doesn't allow divine words not be written down, the testimony of history supports that.
However, you're assuming that ALL divine words would be written down, that human nature would not allow a single divine word to not be written down.  Do you realize how much of an unprovable negative statement this is?  All it takes is one example of the contrary to prove you wrong.

Do the Hindu sacred writings contain EVERYTHING the Hindus believe?  Can ALL the teachings of the Buddha be found complete in the writings of his followers?  Did the native tribes of Alaska even bother to commit any of their spiritual tradition to writing?  I don't know for certain, but it seems you're making an assertion regarding human nature that reflects a very minuscule understanding of history and cultures.

Debate tactic 101, change your opponent's argument to "all" and ridicule it. I never said "all", the point is its impossible the event occur and  NOTHING be written down:

"Why, its a cogent argument. Human nature doesn't allow divine words not be written down, the testimony of history supports that.
What testimony of history do you have for this otherwise unsupported assumption that human nature doesn't allow divine words not be written down?  Do you realize that this requires solid evidence from history?  Do you also realize that according to the logic of your statements, you need to prove from the historical record that EVERY utterance understood to be of divine origin was written down, that NO utterance of "divine" origin failed to find its way into writing?  Are you up to the task of proving that no exceptions exist?  For that's what you'll need to do.

Its common sense...what prophet do you know keeps his mouth shut and hides in closet, never letting anyone know God spoke to him, never putting the message in writing?

BUT your Debate Stratagem #7 "Change the subject to the analogy" won't fly, because I have something better than an analogy...the Orthodox themselves.

You gents can't restrain yourselves when it comes to loudly proclaiming your love for images...just review this thread...icons galore!

The Orthodox are my proof, if the apostolic church were like the Orthodox church today, the NT would shout about icons from the roof tops!


Instead of Orthodox comments about their beloved icons, not even a hint, not one word, not one allusion, not one implication, not one reference, nothing at all.

The ONLY likely reason for the complete and total lack of icon veneration in the Bible, is they didn't practice it.


The fact that you'll draw such hasty generalizations from the participation on this thread alone shows how low you'll go to win this debate.  The total number of Orthodox Christians in the world makes up maybe 5% of the world's population, and the number of Orthodox who post on this thread is maybe not even 1% of the world's population of Orthodox Christians.  And you're going to draw hasty generalizations from THAT!!?  And you expect people to take you and your logic seriously. Roll Eyes  I've seen better logic than that in a Chick tract.
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« Reply #700 on: August 12, 2010, 01:01:29 AM »



"Doctrine which ye have learned", the action is completed in Paul's time.

Therefore doctrines which arose centuries later are not apostolic and all who practice things not taught by  the apostles, are not apostolic.



Interesting: you remind me of the Jehovah's Witness fellow who came over to my front porch a month ago. Just as dogmatic, close-minded and wrong, but with triple the attitude.

I should remind you of James, he says there was only ONE delivery of the truth, not multiple deliveries over the centuries to come:

NKJ  Jude 1:3 Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints. (Jud 1:3 NKJ)

Contend for the faith that already existed in his day...the ONE delivery was past...not in the novelties that would spring up centuries later by oddly dressed men.
Dude, you're full of anachronisms today.  Calling men oddly dressed because they don't dress as we do today.  You can't even insult somebody without committing a logical fallacy. Roll Eyes
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« Reply #701 on: August 12, 2010, 01:31:05 AM »

Well we can go one step further than icon veneration and find that relic veneration was practiced by the early Christians. In the martyrdom of Polycarp (2nd c.) it is stated that the devil, "...proceeded to do his best to arrainge that at least we should not get possession of his (St. Polycarp's) mortal remains, although numbers of us were anxious to do this and to claim our share in the hallowed relics." Tertullian asserts that St. Polycarp was appointed by the apostle St. John, he was known by St. Ignatius (who was known by St.Paul), and highly revered by St. Irenaeus whose words our inquisitor has used in attemp to undermine holy tradtion. So what does he know from the Bible of what is holy tradition vs. the tradition of man?

Only proves we cannot go far from the apostles, if we are to learn what they  believed.

"Claim our share," neither can the ghoulish practice of dismembering the dead be found in the New Testament.  When Jesus died, they no one "claimed their share" of body  parts. When James was stoned, same thing. Not once in the NT do we see the ghoulish superstition.

That Polycarp is relevant to what the apostles taught is not disputed, someone writing about him in the 2nd century, is.



All proper Christian burial would be observed since apostolic Christians administered the rite. since St. Polycarp died in the 2nd c. the authentic eyewitness account was written then & preserved in the apostolic tradition. Your earler claims of us (meaning those who you perceive as being apostolic) are faulty, unsupported by sources, & only relies on how you interpret scripture.

Its hearsay, unreliable.

What they believed does not prove what Polycarp believed and certainly not what the apostles taught.
Lets see you claim to be in apostolic sucession & yet say that someone (me) who finds an apostolic source as evidence of a veneration practice by apostolic Christians of the remains a martyred apsotolic Christian & that I trust these people as observing proper Christian burial rite as relying on unreliable hearsay?

The Church is Apostolic (ecclesia apostolica) inasmuch as all its members to the Last Day come to faith in Christ through the Word of the Apostles (John 17:20: πιστεύσοντες διὰ λόγου αὐτῶν εἰς ἐμέ) and cling to the Word of the Apostles (Acts 2:42: προσκαρτεροῦντες τῇ διδαχῇ τῶν ἀποστόλων), and this over against all departures from the truth of Scripture. Rom. 16:17: “Avoid them,” namely, those who “cause divisions and offenses contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned.”

Pieper, F. (1999). Vol. 3: Christian Dogmatics (electronic ed.) (411). St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House.



"Doctrine which ye have learned", the action is completed in Paul's time.

Therefore doctrines which arose centuries later are not apostolic and all who practice things not taught by  the apostles, are not apostolic.


Relying on a Lutheran theologian's definition of "Apostolic" to tell us Orthodox what "Apostolic" means?  Particularly when the St. Irenaeus whom you love to quote gave us this definition:

It is within the power of all, therefore, in every Church, who may wish to see the truth, to contemplate clearly the tradition of the apostles manifested throughout the whole world; and we are in a position to reckon up those who were by the apostles instituted bishops in the Churches, and [to demonstrate] the succession of these men to our own times; those who neither taught nor knew of anything like what these [heretics] rave about. For if the apostles had known hidden mysteries, which they were in the habit of imparting to “the perfect” apart and privily from the rest, they would have delivered them especially to those to whom they were also committing the Churches themselves. For they were desirous that these men should be very perfect and blameless in all things, whom also they were leaving behind as their successors, delivering up their own place of government to these men; which men, if they discharged their functions honestly, would be a great boon [to the Church], but if they should fall away, the direst calamity.
St. Irenaeus:  Against Heresies, Book III, Chapter 3, Paragraph 1  (from http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf01.ix.iv.iv.html)

I will concede that St. Irenaeus certainly supports Dr. Pieper's and your definition of "Apostolic", since the saint identified doctrine as Apostolic if it was what the Apostles taught, but I would suggest that Dr. Pieper's definition of "Apostolic" is incomplete.  To Irenaeus, the visible succession of bishops from the Apostles was just as much a witness to Apostolicity of a doctrine as the fact that the doctrine was learned from the Apostles themselves.  And, just as St. Ignatius of Antioch taught his flocks to do everything in union with their bishops lest they fall prey to the heretics, so did Irenaeus declare that the truth of doctrine could be ascertained by the fact that those bishops who taught the doctrine were verifiable successors to the Apostles.  If you are not in communion with these bishops, how can you know that your doctrine is Apostolic?


Given the absence of icon veneration in Irenaeus, his words are quite damaging your argument.
Yes, I already refuted your argument for the logical fallacy it is.

Your exegesis of his words fails, you confuse the mechanism with the operator. Irenaeus extols succession, but only to support his claim apostolic truth is being taught in the Universal ("Catholic") Church). When he says "Thus saith the Catholic church" he does not mean "this is the truth invented by the church," his meaning is "as this teaching is found in all the churches, it must have been planted by the apostles, otherwise, if it were a novelty, then only a few churches would believe it."
You have yet to prove that the Apostles didn't venerate icons and didn't teach their followers to do the same.  Your argument that "the Orthodox on this board can't help but talk about icons, therefore the Christians of the Early Church would have done the same if they venerated icons, but we can find no evidence that they ever talked about icons, therefore we must conclude that they did in fact NOT venerate icons" is too full of logical fallacies to prove anything.

1.  We talk so much about icons on this thread because you force us to defend our veneration of icons by attacking it non-stop.  If you weren't attacking us, we'd have no reason to talk so loudly about our veneration of icons.  Likewise with the Church before, during, and after the iconclastic crisis.
2.  Your projection of what you see in Orthodox Christianity of today onto the Early Church ignores the historical circumstances faced by Christians in these totally separate eras.
3.  Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.  Without your artificial and unproven assumption that human nature demands that EVERY divine teaching be written down, there's no reason to believe that the simple absence of any talk about icons indicates that icons were not venerated.
4.  Ialmisry has provided a sizable tome of historical evidence that a number of regional churches painted and venerated icons without ever really talking about them for centuries before the iconoclastic controversies hit the Byzantine Empire.  I notice that you've said nothing in response to this.  Do you even acknowledge the work he did to post all this?  I'm not surprised that you haven't, since doing so would require you to recognize that your argument is now dead.

His argument fails the test of time, scripture and history proves it wrong.
I notice that you've also never given me any of the evidence from history I asked you to give in support of your historical claims.  All you've given me is more of your shoddy logic.

If I could read the New Testament, and then go to an Orthodox church without being surprised by anything there, THEN its apostolic.

No one reading the New Testament alone, can predict what they will find when they go to either a Catholic or an Orthodox church....these are too different.

That proves your churches are not apostolic, even if you have a succession of bishops...which I really doubt, but will concede for the sake of this argument only.
What if there was no New Testament?  You do realize that for the first 200 years or so of Christian history, there was no one book we would recognize today as being the New Testament?
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« Reply #702 on: August 12, 2010, 01:42:05 AM »

We have, from tradition, the Apostle Luke painting several icons as well.

Without proof, you have nothing.

The fact copies of Luke's gospel never had icons is an overwhelming mass of irrefutable evidence the autograph didn't have them either.

The irrefutable evidence is that the autograph of Luke had no attribution to St. Luke on it.  The Church put it there.  The same Church with the icons.

Quote
What icon venerating Orthodox Christian would fail to copy Luke's icons perfectly, so that every extent copy had icons?

Yes, we have to remember that your faith came into existence after the age of printing, so you are hazzy on the concept of manuscripts.

You see, before Mr. Gutenberg, instead of setting one printing press and printing copy after copy, which can be done relatively cheaply, every book had to be written out by hand. Labor intensive, it made books quite expensive, so there were few of them. Illlustrating a book would make it cost prohibitive, so even few were illustrated. So few that only a hand full have survived, among them the Ambrosian Iliad, Vergilius Vaticanus and the Vergilius Romanus, and the Quedlinburg Itala fragment and Cotton Genesis, all of them of the 5th century, the last two being from Bibles
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quedlinburg_Itala_fragment
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cotton_Genesis
dating nearly as far back of the earliest full Bibles we have (Codex Sinaiticus and Codex Vaticanus) which predate the illuminated Bibles by only a few decades. So I guess you have to admit, as documented by the previous three centuries, that the complete Bible didn't exist until the second half of the 4th century, within the lifetime of the earliest illuminated Biblical (actually, any) manuscript codices that survive-which doesn't say the first ones to be produced. The evidence indicates otherwise.

You also should read more carefullly. Shanghaiski said nothing about St. Luke's Gospel being illuminated, nor does the Church.  The Tradition states he wrote (the conventional term) several icons, in addition to writing the Gospel and Acts. You have confused the two acts.

Even works that you would expect to have illustrations, like Ptolemy and Strabo works on geography and astronomy lack illustrations like maps.  Sometimes the most schematic of maps are inserted by later copyists. In the case of the Gospels, why they were neither bound in one volume nor illuminated is not hard to understand why icon venerating and Bible loving Orthodox Christian would fail to copy Luke's icons perfectly, so that every extent copy had icons:Even if the extreme expense could be overcome, they faced the risk of all that expense going up in smoke.  Book burning wasn't invented with printing. Several of the Roman persecusions focused specifically on seizing Bibles and consigning them to the flames. And that is before the ravages of time.

Do have the slightest idea of the extent of available evidence for anything in antiquity?

What the Church tradition teaches is that St. Luke practiced panal painting, which we know was extremely popular in antiquity but of which very, very few examples of any sort have survived.  The largest catch of this art form is the Fayyum portraits, which survive because of being buried (and hence not in use where they can be lost, destroyed, worn out, whatever) in the dry climate, and they number under a thousand over nearly half a millenium. Not much. Several panals survive which are venerated  as St. Luke's work (I venerated one in Saidnay, Syria. In the neighborhood they still speak Aramaic). Unfortunately, like all panal icons from antiquity, they have suffered from well intentioned but ill executed restorations.

I have a Bible in Church Slavonic, reprinted by authroity of the Holy Governing Synod in 1900 on the 1756 edition.  Not a single icon in it (the idea was for mass distribution, illustrations still increase the cost of producing a book considerably).  So I guess that I can conclude that Orthodox Russia in the 18th and 19th centuries didn't venerate icons. I also have a reprint of the 1688 Bucharest Bible, which also doesn't have a single icon in it (altough it does have the coat of arms of the sponsoring prince and the Romanian principalities on it.  So I guess the Romanian Orthodox of the 17th century didn't venerate images either.


I guess not.

Quote
So your argument icon veneration was practiced by Luke fails on many levels, but most importantly, where it matters, you have no proof, therefore you have nothing, only a claim.

On the same basis, the same can be said of your claim that St. Luke wrote the Gospel that the Church attributes to him. And your Muslim friends do say that.

And oh, btw, to get back to St.John the purported subject of this thread, he doesn't mention the tradition of St. Luke's icon, although it was well know and we have records of it centuries before St. John's time, and the tradition appears from India to Ethiopia to the Netherlands, and Rome, Constantinople, Syria, etc. inbetween.  The first glorified saint identified as an iconographer is St. Lazarus of Constantinople: 800?-867, i.e. a century after the rise of the iconoclasts: prior to that, it seems writing icons wasn't seen as significant a cause for canonization, being taken for granted.
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« Reply #703 on: August 12, 2010, 01:47:05 AM »

No, most were like a Bible study in a house.

Have you looked at the archeological evidence which shows the layout of early house-churches? They were set up for liturgical worship. If they were sitting around having Bible studies which might resemble what many Protestants do today, how were they understanding the texts they were looking at? Who was guiding them in their exegesis?

They certainly were not letting the Scripture interpret itself, as the communities only had some, not all of the later-canonized New Testament writings. They were reading some gospels, some epistles, and what you would likely consider a bunch of superstitious fantasy, like the Acts of Paul and Thecla. I would actually be suspicious of Orthodoxy and Roman Catholicism if they lacked any references in their tradition to such works, as they themselves were a part of the life of the Church. Through its liturgical life, the Church has commemorated and preserved many of these stories within the tradition, at least those which were true and beneficial for the flock.

So anyway, the point is that they certainly would have been studying the Septuagint, which we still use in perfect continuity with not only the early Church but also with the LORD Christ, St. Paul and all of the New Testament quotations of the Old Testament. But beyond that they were confined to regional and communal texts, and there was a lot of ambiguity surrounding what were to be considered authoritative writings. Even if every house church had been full of literate Christians (which they were not), who all carried around pocket-sized Septuagints (which they didn't), they still would have looked to their bishop to teach them what they learned from the apostles. They would certainly not have looked to themselves for an authoritative interpretation. Those who did where infamous. They were the heretics.

The earliest house churches were not set up for liturgy. Peter's house was perhaps the first house church:

For all intents and purposes, this house as originally built is indistinguishable from all other houses of ancient Capernaum. Its indoor living area is somewhat larger than usual, but overall it is about the same size as other houses. Its building materials are the usual ones. It was built with no more sophistication than the others in the region. In short, there is nothing to distinguish this house from its neighbors, except perhaps the events that transpired there and what happened to it later.- Editor, H. S. (2004; 2004). BAR 08:06 (Nov/Dec 1982). Biblical Archaeology Society[/b]


As for their exegesis, they relied upon God the Holy Spirit and the teachers He provided, and of course the word of the founding apostles and prophets:

26 How is it then, brethren? Whenever you come together, each of you has a psalm, has a teaching, has a tongue, has a revelation, has an interpretation. Let all things be done for edification.
 27 If anyone speaks in a tongue, let there be two or at the most three, each in turn, and let one interpret.
 28 But if there is no interpreter, let him keep silent in church, and let him speak to himself and to God.
 29 Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others judge.
 30 But if anything is revealed to another who sits by, let the first keep silent.
 31 For you can all prophesy one by one, that all may learn and all may be encouraged.
 32 And the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets.
 33 For God is not the author of confusion but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints.
 (1Co 14:26-33 NKJ)

This shows they could judge doctrine by the scripture:

NKJ  Acts 17:11 These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.
 (Act 17:11 NKJ)

Old Testament scripture was able to make Timothy wise unto salvation, now that God added the New Testament, how much more can it accomplish that feat?:

16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
 17 That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works. (2Ti 3:16-1 KJV)

However you are right there was confusion about which books were inspired, much of the NT was written to combat errors.


No doubt the bigger churches had Bishops who were instructed by the apostles, and house churches eventually merged with these "mega churches." But they were a feature throughout apostolic ministry:

19 The churches of Asia salute you. Aquila and Priscilla salute you much in the Lord, with the church that is in their house. 1 Co 16:19


15 Salute the brethren which are in Laodicea, and Nymphas, and the church which is in his house. Col 4:15

2 And to our beloved Apphia, and Archippus our fellowsoldier, and to the church in thy house: Phm 2


While this was somewhat chaotic, and no doubt gave rise to heretical opinions, the founding apostles and prophets shepherded them through it.  It is likely the insistence of the early church upon apostolic teaching was born from the chaos of these early home churches.


Frankly I prefer one of these house churches where doctrinal disputes occur, than the super religious churches of today that are completely scripted. Chaos can be good. It does appear God like to personally tend to each one individually, and not have a King rule over them:

 6 But the thing displeased Samuel when they said, "Give us a king to judge us." So Samuel prayed to the LORD.
 7 And the LORD said to Samuel, "Heed the voice of the people in all that they say to you; for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected Me, that I should not reign over them.
 8 "According to all the works which they have done since the day that I brought them up out of Egypt, even to this day-- with which they have forsaken Me and served other gods-- so they are doing to you also.
 (1Sa 8:6-8 NKJ)


The only problem is they didn't remain faithful to the gospel, they added to it rather than accepting it was delivered to them full and complete:

Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints. (Jud 1:3 NKJ)

There aren't multiple deliveries down through the ages, it was already "once delivered" when Jude wrote this.

That is why sola scriptura is preferable, then you learn the faith once delivered, without novelty that sprang up later. As Paul said scripture can make us complete, fully equipped, which includes knowing true doctrine, we have faith in God it is so.


Primitive Christianity is what it could be called, and like the church houses existing in apostolic times, we often disagree with each other...but I accept that chaos, just as the apostles did. Fact remains, sola scripturists agree theologically with each other in far greater percentage (90%+)than those who follow the Bible + their traditions.

The late Dr Walter Martin during a Melody-land lecture claimed some students quantified the internal agreement of Christendom, Orthodox Catholic, Protestant, on the major doctrines...and calculated it at about 80% agreement.

Given the body of data we have, its ancient nature, that level of agreement could be considered divinely inspired. Contrast the arguments of scientists and philosophers...much greater disagreement among them exists.

When you think about it, 80% may well be accurate. So even if an atheist tried to use our disunity against Christ, fact is, we agree with each other much more than scientists, philosophers, and atheists.

But alas, this prophecy came true:

Another parable He spoke to them: "The kingdom of heaven is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal till it was all leavened." (Mat 13:33 NKJ)


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« Reply #704 on: August 12, 2010, 02:04:44 AM »

This shows they could judge doctrine by the scripture:
NKJ  Acts 17:11 These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.
 (Act 17:11 NKJ)
Some things to note about this account of the Berean Christians, however.  When St. Paul visited Berea during his second missionary journey, the only Scriptures in circulation at the time were the Jewish Scriptures we call the Old Testament.  St. Paul had just left Thessalonica and would not write his first epistle to the Thessalonians until months later, a significant point since 1 Thessalonians is thought to be the first of the New Testament books ever written.  We also know from 1 Corinthians that St. Paul's chief message was the Cross and Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.  I know of OT texts that prophesy the death (Psalm 22; Isaiah 53) and resurrection (the Prophecy of Jonah) of Christ, but is there any past tense historical account of Christ's death and resurrection in the OT?  Could the Bereans look to the Jewish Scriptures and see historical record of a man named Jesus who died on a cross and rose from the dead?  Of course not, because it's not there!  So what were they looking for?

The correct answer should give you an idea of how to properly read the New Testament.
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« Reply #705 on: August 12, 2010, 02:08:13 AM »

Acts 17:11 These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.

And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest? And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me?
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« Reply #706 on: August 12, 2010, 02:22:38 AM »

Well, there are usually less than 20 people at the Romanian Catholi mission I sometimes attend ... it is definitely nice to worship Christ in such an intimate setting. Smiley

I agree.
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« Reply #707 on: August 12, 2010, 02:25:00 AM »

Acts 17:11 These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.

And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest? And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me?

This is off subject...and we both will discuss this and the Septuagint eventually. While it does appear to be quoted often in the NT, there are times when the Massoretic reading is chosen over the Septuagint. AND sometimes the NT doesn't agree with either. I look forward to discussing this, later. Now I will retire, good night.

I must hasten to add:

KJV  Matthew 5:18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.
 (Mat 5:18 KJV)

I believe Christ is 100% right, not one jot or tittle having meaning was lost. As a picture can be precisely described using different words, I don't get upset when one version uses different words to say the same thing. I consider God providentially preserved the text. So I can hold the Septuagint in the highest regard as well as the Masoretic. While I consider the Massoretic the original, and the Septuagint a translation, I find it often explains what the Hebrew meant to the ancients.

AND I also like the Peshitto Aramaic version. Just thought I add this lest some think I don't agree with Christ's statement...I certainly do, and see in the Plethora of versions, its fulfillment that nothing be lost.

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« Reply #708 on: August 12, 2010, 02:56:23 AM »

lol ... so what, the NT church resembled a Rick Warren style megachurch?

No, most were like a Bible study in a house:

NKJ  Romans 16:5 Likewise greet the church that is in their house. (Rom 16:5 NKJ)

Acts 2:42 And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and the communion, the breaking of the bread and in the Prayers.
Acts 20:7And upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them, ready to depart on the morrow; and continued his speech until midnight. 8And there were many lights in the upper chamber, where they were gathered together. 9And there sat in a window a certain young man named Eutychus, being fallen into a deep sleep: and as Paul was long preaching, he sunk down with sleep, and fell down from the third loft, and was taken up dead. 10And Paul went down, and fell on him, and embracing him said, Trouble not yourselves; for his life is in him. 11When he therefore was come up again, and had broken bread, and eaten, and talked a long while, even till break of day, so he departed.

Consult I Cor. 11.

Quote
I recall bumming for change in San Diego, so I could get high when a group of Christians offered me shelter and food. I surprisingly went with them. There, this vagabond group, led by a Matriarch, held Bible study and witnessed to the love of Jesus.

I recall wanting to put my hands over my ears to not hear...I wanted to run...the conviction of the Holy Spirit was strong...years later I repented and believed.
At least you have made some progress.

Quote
But I remember them, they were precisely like the apostolic church:

LOL. Rmember? You were neither in an Apostle's Church in person, nor by extension. You have to be there first to remember.

I've been to several House Churches, for instance the House of St. Ananias in Damascus and in the Decapolis, where the Hebrew Christian fled after the martyrdo of St. James the Brother of God, the first patriarch of Jerusalem. The best preserved in original condition is the Dura Europas House Church, which, like all the house Churches, show that it was renovated to accommodate liturgical worship. And yes, it is covered iin icons.

Btw, we still have plenty of house Churches among the Orthodox in this country. I was just at a former one for Transfiguration. Former, because now it has been fully converted into a Church, but you can still see, if you look close, where the walls that used to seperate rooms were removed, etc. My own Church used to be a Lutheran Church, and we had a lot of adaptation to bring it into line with Orthodox worship (like removing the pews).

Quote
KJV  2 John 1:1 The elder unto the elect lady and her children, whom I love in the truth; and not I only, but also all they that have known the truth; (2Jo 1:1 KJV)
The term is presbyter, and it =bishop, as the NT shows. It is significant that St. John the Apostle and Disciple of the Lrod identifies himself with the term, signaling the passage of the Church from the Apostles to their successors the bishops (of course, that depends if you believe the Church's identification of the author with the Apostle John, the Epistle doesn't say:
I had thought of starting a thread on Perssonism's teaching on sola scriptura, but decided the thread "Sola Scriptura - A Diversion From the True Word of God" would be an appropriate place to taste test, to spew out as poison, Perssonism's flavor of Sola Scriptura.

The episcopacy of the Orthodox Church, keeping which was commtted to it by the Holy Spirit, stirred up the gift of prophecy which it received by the laying on of the hands of the Apostles (and any Orthodox bishop today, by the ontological whole of the episcopate and Apostolic succession, is only an arm's length away from the Apostles), determined the canon of Scripture and its interpretation.

In fact, so great is the episcopacy, the presbyters of Acts 15, that St. Peter, introduding himself as "an [note, btw: "a," not "the"] Apostle of Jesus Christ," nonetheless identifies himself as a "fellow presbyter" when he invokes himself as a witness of Christ and a partaker of His glory, to exhort his fellow presbyters, whom he identifies as the bishops (5:1-2), and the Apostle John, the disciple whom Christ loved, doesn't give his autority to his second and third epistles as neither the Disciple nor Apostle, but as "the presbyter."
the rest on that more appropriate thread.
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« Reply #709 on: August 12, 2010, 03:04:12 AM »


The earliest house churches were not set up for liturgy. Peter's house was perhaps the first house church:

For all intents and purposes, this house as originally built is indistinguishable from all other houses of ancient Capernaum. Its indoor living area is somewhat larger than usual, but overall it is about the same size as other houses. Its building materials are the usual ones. It was built with no more sophistication than the others in the region. In short, there is nothing to distinguish this house from its neighbors, except perhaps the events that transpired there and what happened to it later.- Editor, H. S. (2004; 2004). BAR 08:06 (Nov/Dec 1982). Biblical Archaeology Society[/b]


How does this mean it wasn't set up for liturgy?  The Orthodox church I attend in Japan is seriously about the size of my college dorm room and it's quite liturgical.

Quote
As for their exegesis, they relied upon God the Holy Spirit and the teachers He provided, and of course the word of the founding apostles and prophets:
When did God quit providing His Church with teachers?


Quote
Old Testament scripture was able to make Timothy wise unto salvation, now that God added the New Testament, how much more can it accomplish that feat?:

16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
 17 That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works. (2Ti 3:16-1 KJV)

Where does it say here that Scripture is all that's needed?  And if it's so easy to get stuff right with just the OT and NT what happen with all those heretics (e.g. Arius, Nestorius, Eutyches, Apollinaris, etc.)?

Quote
However you are right there was confusion about which books were inspired, much of the NT was written to combat errors.
And the Church is the one who selected which books were inspired based upon what she already believed.

Quote
No doubt the bigger churches had Bishops who were instructed by the apostles, and house churches eventually merged with these "mega churches." But they were a feature throughout apostolic ministry:

19 The churches of Asia salute you. Aquila and Priscilla salute you much in the Lord, with the church that is in their house. 1 Co 16:19


15 Salute the brethren which are in Laodicea, and Nymphas, and the church which is in his house. Col 4:15

2 And to our beloved Apphia, and Archippus our fellowsoldier, and to the church in thy house: Phm 2

If the Apostles visited or sent letters to these house churches and the house churches responded, "No thanks.  We're doing our own thing."  What then?  Would that be ok?  Would they be part of the Church that Jesus Christ founded?

Quote
While this was somewhat chaotic, and no doubt gave rise to heretical opinions, the founding apostles and prophets shepherded them through it.  It is likely the insistence of the early church upon apostolic teaching was born from the chaos of these early home churches.
No problem there!


Quote
Frankly I prefer one of these house churches where doctrinal disputes occur, than the super religious churches of today that are completely scripted. Chaos can be good.
You've set up a false dichotomy if you think that doctrinal disputes don't occur in those "super religious churches of today that are completely scripted."  

And where in the Bible does Christ or one of the Apostles condone chaos in the churches?  Where do either Christ or the Apostles condone denominationalism and everybody doing their own thing?


Quote
It does appear God like to personally tend to each one individually, and not have a King rule over them:

 6 But the thing displeased Samuel when they said, "Give us a king to judge us." So Samuel prayed to the LORD.
 7 And the LORD said to Samuel, "Heed the voice of the people in all that they say to you; for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected Me, that I should not reign over them.
 8 "According to all the works which they have done since the day that I brought them up out of Egypt, even to this day-- with which they have forsaken Me and served other gods-- so they are doing to you also.
 (1Sa 8:6-8 NKJ)
Assuming that this could be taken out of its historical context and generalized (which I don't think it necessarily can), it's still problematic for you.  Because God is displeased with the people for rebelling against the one who He set up over them (i.e. Samuel).  Much like when people rebel against Christ's Church and Her bishops.


Quote
The only problem is they didn't remain faithful to the gospel, they added to it rather than accepting it was delivered to them full and complete:

Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints. (Jud 1:3 NKJ)

There aren't multiple deliveries down through the ages, it was already "once delivered" when Jude wrote this.

That is why sola scriptura is preferable, then you learn the faith once delivered, without novelty that sprang up later. As Paul said scripture can make us complete, fully equipped, which includes knowing true doctrine, we have faith in God it is so.

And how do you know what you have is the "true doctrine"?  We all agree it's been handed down once to the saints.  But most here would say that's been preserved only within the Orthodox Church and not added to and then chipped away at and then added to some more as in the various Protestant churches.

Quote
Primitive Christianity is what it could be called, and like the church houses existing in apostolic times, we often disagree with each other...but I accept that chaos, just as the apostles did.
Where did the Apostles ever "accept the chaos"?  Did not St. Paul tell them to "be of one mind"?


Quote
Fact remains, sola scripturists agree theologically with each other in far greater percentage (90%+)than those who follow the Bible + their traditions.
Where did you get this idea from?
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« Reply #710 on: August 12, 2010, 03:12:04 AM »

lol ... so what, the NT church resembled a Rick Warren style megachurch?

No, most were like a Bible study in a house:

NKJ  Romans 16:5 Likewise greet the church that is in their house. (Rom 16:5 NKJ)


I'm trying to picture it.  You are saying that people would sit together in a room, with each person having a Bible as we know it today, (in the form of a codex) on their lap, taking turns reading passages and discussing and interpreting the passages?

That's a bit different from the early accounts of Christian house church worship.  I'm thinking of  Hyppolytus.  

This is before him. They would have some scripture, not a Bible because only the rich could afford it. Fragments of a book most likely, that they exchanged with other churches, at first. Of course as time went on, they got bigger and more scripture.

BUT we should never forget, Paul often fellowshiped in homes where the church of 10 or so people, met.
What is your evidence for the last statement? And the term is communion.

Btw, before St. Hippolytus was St. Justin Martyr, who hailed from Palestine within a century of the Church's founding.  His description resembles the DL. It doesn't resemble your Bible study model at all.
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« Reply #711 on: August 12, 2010, 03:22:44 AM »

Nonsense, my dog doesn't poop anywhwere near the BBQ - and Christians who venerated icons were so comon there was no need for anyone to comment about it till the iconoclast neighbors started complaining.  Grumpy Mr. Wilson types who hate dogs - er, icons Smiley .

The female Denis the Menace, somehow that fits.

But it was the other way around, the iconoclasts had nothing to complain about at first, the new neighbors seemed to be like them. But as time when on, they began violating the zoning laws with their images...only then did they realize they waited too long.
No, they were too late moving into the neighborhood: they were the new neighbors, the Muslim caliphs, whom the Christian iconoclasts imitated (their founder, Leo III, was born and grew up in the caliphate, during the time it turned on images).
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« Reply #712 on: August 12, 2010, 03:27:23 AM »

Maybe they don't hear my dog barking because he's quiet and well-behaved.

I thought you shook the dust off your feet...without strawberries no less.

Even if he is quiet and well behaved, people will still step in his poop when they barbecue in the yard, and their comments will be known.
Well, I have to defer to your knowledge of poop.

As for history, theology, logic.....

And I used to walk my dogs in the alley. So no evidence for the barbecue.
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« Reply #713 on: August 12, 2010, 03:37:36 AM »

Well, I have to defer to your knowledge of poop.
That's a relief!  For a minute there, I thought he didn't know poop.
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« Reply #714 on: August 12, 2010, 04:06:46 AM »

That is why the lack of testimony for icons in the early church  is probative.

Unlike sola scriptura, there is no lack of testimony for icons in the early church.

Where? No icons are mentioned in those fathers directly after the apostles, none, zero.

The icon is mentioned, explicitely, in the NT several times: Matthew 22:20; Mark 12:16; Luke 20:24; Romans 1:23 8:29; 1 Corinthians 11:7; 15:49 2 Corinthians 3:18; 4:4; Colossians 1:15; 3:10; Hebrews 10:1; Revelation 13:14-15; 14:9, 11; 15:2; 16:2 ; 19:20; 20:4. As it is in the LXX: Genesis 1:26-27; 5:1-3; 9:6; Deuteronomy 4:16 1 Kingdoms 6:11 (Alexandrian manuscript); 4 Kingdoms 11:18; 2 Paralipomenon 33:7; Psalm 38:7; 72:20; Isaiah 40, 19-20; Ezekiel 7:20; 8:5 (Alexandrian manuscript); 16:17; 23:14; Daniel 2:31,32,34,35;  3:1,2,3,5,7,11,12,14,15,18; Hosea 13:2.

sola scriptura is never mentioned at all. None. Zero. Neither the term, nor the concept. Nor the theology underlining it.

Quote
Sola scriptura is taught, but to speak of that now is to change the subject away

which is why I have answered on the more appropriate thread:
I had thought of starting a thread on Perssonism's teaching on sola scriptura, but decided the thread "Sola Scriptura - A Diversion From the True Word of God" would be an appropriate place to taste test, to spew out as poison, Perssonism's flavor of Sola Scriptura.

Quote
from the very embarrassing fact (for you) that icon veneration is completely absent in both the Bible AND the earliest church fathers.

Icon veneration, much to your obvious embarrasment, appears in both the Bible and the earliest Church Fathers.  St. John compiles quite a list of references.  If you had read him, you would know that.

Quote
That it developed centuries later I freely admit, but that apostasy is irrelevant to what the apostles taught.

If apostacy developed centuries after the apostles, then Christ's promise to remain with the Church "all the days until the end of the age," and "the gates of Hell will not prevail against her" are lies, and His words irrelevant.  As posted above, St. John points that out.

So "freely admit"?  How early do you "freely admit?"
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« Reply #715 on: August 12, 2010, 10:31:02 AM »

Btw, I was talking to someone about the Chapel at Fort Ross, the first Orthodox parish in the lower 48.  If you look inside it today, you might conclude that the early Orhtodox in this country had no images:

(the icons in the cabinet on the walls are period IIRC, but recently restored)
There is almost no description of the Chapel's inside. After all, most at Fort Ross had seen the inside of a Russian Church. THere is more detailed descriptions of the governor and manager's home (which also include the icons that were in the rooms, something different for American and Western European visitors).  When the Russians evacuated, they told everything with them to the Cathedral in Sitka, except a lectern, the candlelabra and candle stand.

I see two icons behind the lectern, on the wall.

LBK has already take this:
Quote
I see two icons behind the lectern, on the wall.
This is yet more evidence that you ignore what people are saying in their posts. ialmisry did indeed state in this post:the icons in the cabinet on the walls are period IIRC, but recently restored
We are spoonfeeding you, yet you keep shutting your mouth to the spoon.

But let's ignore that for the moment: are you going to tell us that seeing the interior above, that you would conclude that the parishioners left this

in Russia? That's a picture of a Church in Irkutsk, the cathedral city of Fort Ross and Alaska (I'm not sure if you know what that means). The settlers of Fort Ross from Russia would have passed through Irkutsk.

But let's say that the icons are original and hadn't been moved (they had been: after Sutter bought the buildings from the evacuating Russians, the Chapel was used as a barn). What is there to tell you that they were venerated?  We know that they were, unless the Russian Orthodox at Fort Ross were unlike all other Russian Orthodox, the largest Christian society at the time, on which we have plenty of contemporary sources on RO praxis.

If you go to the manager's house, etc. there are icon corners (also restorations) which have vigil lamps before them and icon cloths, grreens from Pentacost/Palm Sunday etc. (I don't know if you know what that means. Trust me, it means that they are being venerated). We know that they were there, as the heterodox visitors to Fort Ross mention them.  The Russian visitors, in contrast do not, as far as I have seen: for the Russian Orthodox of the time, as now, an icon corner is too taken for granted to atract attention besides veneration.

The icons you see in the Chapel have no vigil lamps, no covering cloths. No icon stand on which to venerate them, but high up on the wall out of reach.  The silver on them might make you think they were venerated, but that is also a reason why the originals were taken to Sitka: otherwise they would have been destroyed for the sivler by the non=Orthodox.  So, looking just at the icons that are now there, can you explain how you would deduce the veneration, which you so object too, was given to the icons in the Chapel?  We know of course, that they were, because of the ample evidence on Russian Orthodox praxis at the time.

Now look at the icons on the catacombs, Dura Europos Church, etc.: how do you distinguish them from the evidence of the two small restored icons on Fort Ross' Chapel's walls?
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« Reply #716 on: August 12, 2010, 10:45:03 AM »

No, most were like a Bible study in a house.

Have you looked at the archeological evidence which shows the layout of early house-churches? They were set up for liturgical worship. If they were sitting around having Bible studies which might resemble what many Protestants do today, how were they understanding the texts they were looking at? Who was guiding them in their exegesis?

They certainly were not letting the Scripture interpret itself, as the communities only had some, not all of the later-canonized New Testament writings. They were reading some gospels, some epistles, and what you would likely consider a bunch of superstitious fantasy, like the Acts of Paul and Thecla. I would actually be suspicious of Orthodoxy and Roman Catholicism if they lacked any references in their tradition to such works, as they themselves were a part of the life of the Church. Through its liturgical life, the Church has commemorated and preserved many of these stories within the tradition, at least those which were true and beneficial for the flock.

So anyway, the point is that they certainly would have been studying the Septuagint, which we still use in perfect continuity with not only the early Church but also with the LORD Christ, St. Paul and all of the New Testament quotations of the Old Testament. But beyond that they were confined to regional and communal texts, and there was a lot of ambiguity surrounding what were to be considered authoritative writings. Even if every house church had been full of literate Christians (which they were not), who all carried around pocket-sized Septuagints (which they didn't), they still would have looked to their bishop to teach them what they learned from the apostles. They would certainly not have looked to themselves for an authoritative interpretation. Those who did where infamous. They were the heretics.

I'll footstomp the last part.

We're talking early church. As in pre-bible church. It wasn't until hundreds of years later (the African Synod of Hippo, in 393, approved the New Testament, as it stands today) when councils began to be held that the bible took form. (which might I add, the bible when assembled contained the apocryphal books protestants remove)

Therefore, not only were they gathered in 'houses' (of the lord, if I may). But they also weren't having a bible study! There was NO BIBLE.... yet[The had (only) the Old Testament (the Septuagint)]. They were worshiping by sacred tradition alone and being lead by an elder (priest/presbyter/old dude that knew stuff)
« Last Edit: August 12, 2010, 10:52:57 AM by Azurestone » Logged


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« Reply #717 on: August 12, 2010, 10:53:30 AM »

No, most were like a Bible study in a house.

Have you looked at the archeological evidence which shows the layout of early house-churches? They were set up for liturgical worship. If they were sitting around having Bible studies which might resemble what many Protestants do today, how were they understanding the texts they were looking at? Who was guiding them in their exegesis?

They certainly were not letting the Scripture interpret itself, as the communities only had some, not all of the later-canonized New Testament writings. They were reading some gospels, some epistles, and what you would likely consider a bunch of superstitious fantasy, like the Acts of Paul and Thecla. I would actually be suspicious of Orthodoxy and Roman Catholicism if they lacked any references in their tradition to such works, as they themselves were a part of the life of the Church. Through its liturgical life, the Church has commemorated and preserved many of these stories within the tradition, at least those which were true and beneficial for the flock.

So anyway, the point is that they certainly would have been studying the Septuagint, which we still use in perfect continuity with not only the early Church but also with the LORD Christ, St. Paul and all of the New Testament quotations of the Old Testament. But beyond that they were confined to regional and communal texts, and there was a lot of ambiguity surrounding what were to be considered authoritative writings. Even if every house church had been full of literate Christians (which they were not), who all carried around pocket-sized Septuagints (which they didn't), they still would have looked to their bishop to teach them what they learned from the apostles. They would certainly not have looked to themselves for an authoritative interpretation. Those who did where infamous. They were the heretics.

All are good points, but you forget the obvious. We're talking early church. As in pre-bible church. It wasn't until hundreds of years later when councils began to be held that the bible began to look like it is today. (which might I add, the bible when assembled contained the apocryphal books protestants remove)

Therefore, not only were they gathered in 'houses' (of the lord, if I may). But they also weren't having a bible study! There was NO BIBLE.... yet. They were worshiping by sacred tradition alone and being lead by an elder (priest/presbyter/old dude that knew stuff
and was sent by the bishop who was sent by an Apostle, sent by Christ, sent by God the Father.
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« Reply #718 on: August 12, 2010, 12:47:16 PM »

I got through 6 pages of this nonsense and it is too difficult to go on. But Mr Persson has repeatedly asserted that Icons are either Nestorian or Monophysic.

What Mr Persson fails to grasp is (and if he had read St John's writings he would know this), an icon is an image of a Person, not an image of a Nature.

Yes, it would indeed be Monophysitism to say an icon is an image of the Human-Divine Nature that is Jesus Christ. This implies that he has one composite Nature, rather than two separate Natures.

It is not Monophysitism to say an icon is an image of the Human-Divine Person that is Jesus Christ. All that it means to be God is contained in the physical body that is Jesus Christ.

Since Jesus Christ contains all that is God, and Jesus Christ is a person, and a person can be depicted, God can be depicted. No one says that depiction itself is God, however, which is what Alfred seems to imply.

Also, I don't now if everything about Sola Scriptura was resolved in later posts, but I don't think Mr Persson ever proved that God's prohibition of images is universal rather than contextural.

He says that "God doesn't change", but that is clearly an ontological statement. God in His own self does not change, but God certainly does change in the way He interacts with us.

This, I think, stems from Protestantism's tendency to worship the text of the Bible as if it is the very Essence of God. It's not. Everything in the Bible has a context. The reasons for the prohibition of image-making must be taken into consideration.

God prohibited images because the Israelites had severe problems with idolatry. Like their pagan neighbors, they worshipped objects as if the objects were God-in-Essence unto themselves. So, images violated the principle at the root of the iconoclastic law: "have no gods before me."

We do not have this problem today. No Christian would ever worship an icon of Christ as if it is God-in-Essence unto itself. Icons help us, who are material creatures with material needs, focus our energies to the actual, existing Person who is Christ. Therefore images are not just not prohibited, they are necessary witnesses to the Incarnation.

Mr Persson says that we would never kiss a photograph of a person who was in front of us, as if Orthodox worship a disincarnate Christ. But it is Protestants whose Christ is disincarnate, because they interact with him through their minds only. Mr Persson, by virtue of everything he has said, does not worship a Person who can be known and interacted with physically; rather he worships a Philosophy that can be pondered about. This is not Christianity as the Apostles and Fathers have passed down to us.

And as an aside, it's very childish reasoning to say "God says X, and God doesn't change, therefore God still says X." As I said above, God does not change in his Essence and his Will, but his Energies and means of interacting with the world change all the time. And the prohibition on images is one such example. (And whatever laws are in place at the end of Revelation do not remain perpetually in effect merely because the Bible does not contain a repeal of them. God is not dead, nor did he enter an eternal static state when St John wrote the Bible's final "Amen", which Sola Scriptura implies.)

Just some random thoughts from a Johnny-come-lately.
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« Reply #719 on: August 12, 2010, 12:57:32 PM »

Although not on point, as Mr. Persson isn't addressing St. John's points on these matters, this was too short to be worthwhile to put elsewhere.
"Doctrine which ye have learned", the action is completed in Paul's time.

Then we can dispense with the Gosples, as all were written after St. Paul's martyrdom.

Quote
Therefore doctrines which arose centuries later are not apostolic

Then what about those doctrines which arose within the century after the Apostles, taught to them by the Apostles themselves?

Quote
and all who practice things not taught by the apostles, are not apostolic.
You mean like practicing sola scriptura, lacking bishops consecrated by Apostolic succession, walking in the traditions of the Pharisees, and denying the authroity of the Church?

On the rest of this post, click on this quote link V
Lets see you claim to be in apostolic sucession & yet say that someone (me) who finds an apostolic source as evidence of a veneration practice by apostolic Christians of the remains a martyred apsotolic Christian & that I trust these people as observing proper Christian burial rite as relying on unreliable hearsay?

The Church is Apostolic (ecclesia apostolica) inasmuch as all its members to the Last Day come to faith in Christ through the Word of the Apostles (John 17:20: πιστεύσοντες διὰ λόγου αὐτῶν εἰς ἐμέ) and cling to the Word of the Apostles (Acts 2:42: προσκαρτεροῦντες τῇ διδαχῇ τῶν ἀποστόλων), and this over against all departures from the truth of Scripture. Rom. 16:17: “Avoid them,” namely, those who “cause divisions and offenses contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned.”
Pieper, F. (1999). Vol. 3: Christian Dogmatics (electronic ed.) (411). St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House.
1999? That's only 1900 years too late to be in contact with an Apostle to receive their teaching.

President Pieper also comes nearly 1800 years too late too.


Like you, he was sent by no one sent by the Apostles, hence not sent by Christ, therefore not sent by God.
btw, that's not an icon.

rest of the refutation of your heresiarch Pieper on the more appropriate thread. Click on the top quote link

« Last Edit: August 12, 2010, 12:59:05 PM by ialmisry » Logged

Question a friend, perhaps he did not do it; but if he did anything so that he may do it no more.
A hasty quarrel kindles fire,
and urgent strife sheds blood.
If you blow on a spark, it will glow;
if you spit on it, it will be put out;
                           and both come out of your mouth
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