OrthodoxChristianity.net
November 23, 2014, 03:43:51 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: Reminder: No political discussions in the public fora.  If you do not have access to the private Politics Forum, please send a PM to Fr. George.
 
   Home   Help Calendar Contact Treasury Tags Login Register  
Pages: 1   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Eucharistic Sacrifice  (Read 2488 times) Average Rating: 0
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
Buzzbait
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Faith: Anglican
Jurisdiction: The Episcopal Church
Posts: 7


« on: January 15, 2011, 03:05:47 AM »

Hello, all!  This is my first post here.  Before I begin, I must say that, so far, I am really impressed by this site.

Allow me to introduce myself so you know my background and from what direction I am approaching Orthodoxy.  I am a recovering TULIP Presbyterian (PCA) who currently calls the Anglican Communion "home" (Do not fear, I am greatly saddened by the state of TEC and ACC).  I have done some serious investigation of the RCC, but eventually rejected it due to some inconsistencies I discovered, along with its leanings towards legalism, especially with its attitude toward mortal and venial sins.

Now, I have turned my attention to the completely foreign world of Orthodoxy.  As a die-hard fan off classical anglo-westernism, it is very difficult coming to grips with saints with names like Vladimir.  Wink  It was the music of the Valaam Brotherhood that first brought my attention to Orthodoxy.

In my wrestling with the Orthodox faith, I have come across the Eucharistic Sacrifice.  What is the Orthodox stance with regards to this doctrine, and what are the Scriptural/Historical basis for this belief?  How does this work with the doctrine of the "once and for all sacrifice of the Cross."  You might sigh that with my demand for a reference to Holy Scripture, but I am still a Protestant, and you have to convince me on my terms Grin.

Thank you in advance for your replies!  I look forward to the robust discussions!

In Christ,
Buzzbait
Logged
Shiny
Site Supporter
Moderated
Toumarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Groucho Marxist
Jurisdiction: Dahntahn Stoop Haus
Posts: 13,267


Paint It Red


« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2011, 03:14:07 AM »

Greetings Buzzbait, I hope this forum answers the questions that you are seeking!

The Eucharist was established by Christ himself. "When it was evening," Jesus "took bread, and blessed, and broke it, and gave it to the disciples and said, `Take, eat; this is My body, broken on behalf of all for the forgiveness of sins,' and "He took the cup, and when He had given thanks He gave it to them, saying, `Drink of it, all of you; for this is My blood of the New Covenant, which is shed for many for the forgiveness of sins.'" Christ added, "Do this in remembrance of Me" (Matthew, 26:20-9; Mark, 14:17-25; Luke, 22:14-38; John, 6:27-69; 1 Corinthians, 11:23-26)

For Orthodox Christians, the bread and the wine aren't just symbols but the real body and blood of Christ transfigured by the Holy Spirit. It's mysterious on how this occurs. The main purpose of the sacrament then is the forgiveness of man's sins. Along with the forgiveness, though, come the sanctification and glory, eternal life. This is why when the celebrant gives Holy Communion, he says to each person: "the Body and Blood of Christ, for the forgiveness of your sins and life eternal."

In other places in Holy Scripture, Christ has assured us that His Body is "truly food" and His Blood is "truly drink." Moreover, this is shown by the fearsome saying that "whoever does not eat My body and does not drink My blood, has no life in him." This proves that the Holy Eucharist is the spiritual nourishment of man. Just as man cannot live without natural nourishment, so neither can he live without spiritual nourishment--the body and blood of Christ--without Holy Eucharist. Christ makes this very clear. He says that "unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink His blood, you have no life in you; he who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life" (John, 6:53-54). Holy Eucharist unites man with God. It deifies him. Since man unites with God, he also unites with other people. St. Paul says that "because there is one bread, we who are many are one body, for we all partake of the One Bread" (1 Corinthians, 10:17). This unifying of the people among themselves into one body is like the unity of the three Persons of the Holy Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

http://www.gocanada.org/catechism/cateuch.htm
Logged

“There is your brother, naked, crying, and you stand there confused over the choice of an attractive floor covering.”

– St. Ambrose of Milan
Buzzbait
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Faith: Anglican
Jurisdiction: The Episcopal Church
Posts: 7


« Reply #2 on: January 15, 2011, 03:18:15 AM »

I don't have a problem with the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist.  I myself believe that, and it is what started me on my journey to Anglicanism.  I just don't understand the Eucharist being a true and proper sacrifice.
Logged
Shiny
Site Supporter
Moderated
Toumarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Groucho Marxist
Jurisdiction: Dahntahn Stoop Haus
Posts: 13,267


Paint It Red


« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2011, 03:24:48 AM »

The Orthodox Church believes the Eucharist to be a sacrifice. As is heard in the Liturgy, "Thine of Thine own we offer to Thee, in all and for all."

1. At the Eucharist, the sacrifice offered is Christ himself, and it is Christ himself who in the Church performs the act of offering: He is both priest and victim.
2. We offer to Thee. The Eucharist is offered to God the Trinity — not just to the Father but also to the Holy Spirit and to Christ Himself. So, what is the sacrifice of the Eucharist? By whom is it offered? and to whom is it offered? In each case the answer is Christ.
3. We offer for all: according to Orthodox theology, the Eucharist is a propitiatory sacrifice, offered on behalf of both the living and the dead.

The Church teaches that the sacrifice is not a mere figure or symbol but a true sacrifice. It is not the bread that is sacrificed, but the very Body of Christ. And, the Lamb of God was sacrificed only once, for all time. The sacrifice at the Eucharist consists, not in the real and bloody immolation of the Lamb, but in the transformation of the bread into the sacrificed Lamb.
All the events of Christ's sacrifice, the Incarnation, the Last Supper, the Crucifixion, the Resurrection, and the Ascension are not repeated in the Eucharist, but they are made present.

-orthodoxwiki
Logged

“There is your brother, naked, crying, and you stand there confused over the choice of an attractive floor covering.”

– St. Ambrose of Milan
FormerReformer
Convertodox of the convertodox
Site Supporter
Archon
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: I'll take (e) for "all of the above"
Posts: 2,440



WWW
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2011, 03:39:54 AM »

It pretty much goes along with verses which refer to things like "Lamb Who was slain from the foundation of the world".  Yes, from our point of view, Jesus Christ died on the cross 2,000 years ago.  But the point of view of the Church (that is, the Body) is that this Sacrifice (and indeed, the very sacrifice of the Incarnation itself, the humbling of God) is present as the present.  When we participate in the Liturgy we are taken outside of time into the timeless place: Christ is Born, Christ is Crucified, Christ is Risen, Christ is Ascended, and Christ is in our midst.  When we partake of the Eucharist we are not sacrificing Christ anew, but rather receiving from that only sacrifice, partaking not of a dead God, but rather the Living Flesh and Blood of God Incarnate.

This is one of the reasons, as well, for Icons and musical traditions dating back 2,000 years, to remind us that we worship not only in the now but also with the Saints of the Church who came before us and with those who will (Lord willing) come after us.
Logged

"Funny," said Lancelot, "how the people who can't pray say that prayers are not answered, however much the people who can pray say they are."  TH White

Oh, no: I've succumbed to Hyperdoxy!
Alpo
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Jerkodox
Posts: 6,940



« Reply #5 on: January 15, 2011, 04:46:42 AM »

I just don't understand the Eucharist being a true and proper sacrifice.

It's based on Christ's own words.

And taking bread, he gave thanks, and brake; and gave to them, saying: This is my body, which is given for you. Do this for a commemoration of me. In like manner the chalice also, after he had supped, saying: This is the chalice, the new testament in my blood, which shall be shed for you.
St. Luke 22: 20

"which is given for you" and "which shall be shed for you". That happened on the cross. And since Our Lord's death on the cross was the sacrifice for us Eucharist must also be a true and proper sacrifice. Hence mere "real presence" a'la some Protestant churches is not enough. Biblical understanding of Eucharist includes also it being a sacrifice.
« Last Edit: January 15, 2011, 04:49:31 AM by Alpo » Logged

Benjamin the Red
Recovering Calvinist
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Catholic
Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church in America, Diocese of Dallas and the South ||| American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese
Posts: 1,601


Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me.


« Reply #6 on: January 15, 2011, 11:16:51 AM »

I don't have a problem with the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist.  I myself believe that, and it is what started me on my journey to Anglicanism.  I just don't understand the Eucharist being a true and proper sacrifice.

And it certainly is a sacrifice. Each Divine Liturgy we sing that it is "a mercy of peace, a sacrifice of grace."

The words that best sum this up, in my opinion, were never intended to do so, and come from a Reformed Protestant theologian of the 20th century. Karl Barth stated that the cross was "an eternal event that occurred within history."

Christ was crucified once, but we eternally partake of that sacrifice, and enter into it again in each Divine Liturgy. You say you already believe Christ is present in his "blood shed" and his "body broken"...if they are truly shed and broken, it is not, then, a sacrifice? Not that we crucify Christ again and again, but that we eternally partake of that moment which divided history, ransomed Sheol and redemmed humanity.
Logged

"Hades is not a place, no, but a state of the soul. It begins here on earth. Just so, paradise begins in the soul of a man here in the earthly life. Here we already have contact with the divine..." -St. John, Wonderworker of Shanghai and San Francisco, Homily On the Sunday of Orthodoxy
Buzzbait
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Faith: Anglican
Jurisdiction: The Episcopal Church
Posts: 7


« Reply #7 on: January 15, 2011, 12:05:25 PM »

 When we partake of the Eucharist we are not sacrificing Christ anew, but rather receiving from that only sacrifice, partaking not of a dead God, but rather the Living Flesh and Blood of God Incarnate.

So the Eucharist is Christ's eternal sacrifice on the Cross made present in our midst of which we partake?  Is that the proper understanding?
I don't have a problem with the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist.  I myself believe that, and it is what started me on my journey to Anglicanism.  I just don't understand the Eucharist being a true and proper sacrifice.

And it certainly is a sacrifice. Each Divine Liturgy we sing that it is "a mercy of peace, a sacrifice of grace."

The words that best sum this up, in my opinion, were never intended to do so, and come from a Reformed Protestant theologian of the 20th century. Karl Barth stated that the cross was "an eternal event that occurred within history."

Christ was crucified once, but we eternally partake of that sacrifice, and enter into it again in each Divine Liturgy. You say you already believe Christ is present in his "blood shed" and his "body broken"...if they are truly shed and broken, it is not, then, a sacrifice? Not that we crucify Christ again and again, but that we eternally partake of that moment which divided history, ransomed Sheol and redemmed humanity.

That is a very helpful quote from Barth in this context. Shocked

So, if the Eucharist is Christ's eternal sacrifice made present in our midst, let me ask you this.  In the RCC, your sins you have committed that week are remitted at the Mass, and you leave the Mass "justified", in the Western sense of the word.  As you continue along in the weak, however, your sins build up, and you become unclean.  But once you go to the sacrifice of the Mass, your sins are atoned for once again.  Is this the Orthodox view of the Eucharist?  In my mind, the Catholic view unwittingly continues the tradition of the Old Covenant. Huh

Again, thank you for your help!
« Last Edit: January 15, 2011, 12:06:07 PM by Buzzbait » Logged
Melodist
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: The Faith That Established The Universe
Jurisdiction: AOANA
Posts: 2,523



« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2011, 12:14:19 PM »

I don't have a problem with the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist.  I myself believe that, and it is what started me on my journey to Anglicanism.  I just don't understand the Eucharist being a true and proper sacrifice.

This might help. In the narratives that we find in the synoptic gospels, Christ identifies the bread and wine with not just His Body and Blood, but His Body which is "given for you" (Luke 22:19) and His Blood "of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins" (Matt 26:28). St Paul says in 1 Cor 11:26 that when we celebrate the Eucharist that we "shew the Lord's death till he come". So both Christ Himself and St Paul identify the Eucharist specifically with what happened on the cross, which is that one sacrifice made once for all.
Logged

And FWIW, these are our Fathers too, you know.

Made Perfect in Weakness - Latest Post: The Son of God
Ambrose of Milan
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Catholic
Jurisdiction: Antioch
Posts: 46



« Reply #9 on: January 15, 2011, 12:33:50 PM »

 When we partake of the Eucharist we are not sacrificing Christ anew, but rather receiving from that only sacrifice, partaking not of a dead God, but rather the Living Flesh and Blood of God Incarnate.

So the Eucharist is Christ's eternal sacrifice on the Cross made present in our midst of which we partake?  Is that the proper understanding?
I don't have a problem with the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist.  I myself believe that, and it is what started me on my journey to Anglicanism.  I just don't understand the Eucharist being a true and proper sacrifice.

And it certainly is a sacrifice. Each Divine Liturgy we sing that it is "a mercy of peace, a sacrifice of grace."

The words that best sum this up, in my opinion, were never intended to do so, and come from a Reformed Protestant theologian of the 20th century. Karl Barth stated that the cross was "an eternal event that occurred within history."

Christ was crucified once, but we eternally partake of that sacrifice, and enter into it again in each Divine Liturgy. You say you already believe Christ is present in his "blood shed" and his "body broken"...if they are truly shed and broken, it is not, then, a sacrifice? Not that we crucify Christ again and again, but that we eternally partake of that moment which divided history, ransomed Sheol and redemmed humanity.

That is a very helpful quote from Barth in this context. Shocked

So, if the Eucharist is Christ's eternal sacrifice made present in our midst, let me ask you this.  In the RCC, your sins you have committed that week are remitted at the Mass, and you leave the Mass "justified", in the Western sense of the word.  As you continue along in the weak, however, your sins build up, and you become unclean.  But once you go to the sacrifice of the Mass, your sins are atoned for once again.  Is this the Orthodox view of the Eucharist?  In my mind, the Catholic view unwittingly continues the tradition of the Old Covenant. Huh

Again, thank you for your help!

All of the sacraments stem from the one sacrifice. In both the RCC and Orthodoxy one goes to the sacrament of confession for the forgiveness of sins, of course for the obvious reasons of forgiveness and spiritual healing but also in due preparation to receive the Eucharist. You don't just receive the Eucharist all willy nilly, you hallow yourself through confession and fasting first. In both the RCC and Orthodoxy it is generally frowned upon to receive the Eucharist without having confessed your sins.
Logged
Benjamin the Red
Recovering Calvinist
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Catholic
Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church in America, Diocese of Dallas and the South ||| American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese
Posts: 1,601


Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me.


« Reply #10 on: January 15, 2011, 12:44:00 PM »

 When we partake of the Eucharist we are not sacrificing Christ anew, but rather receiving from that only sacrifice, partaking not of a dead God, but rather the Living Flesh and Blood of God Incarnate.

So the Eucharist is Christ's eternal sacrifice on the Cross made present in our midst of which we partake?  Is that the proper understanding?
I don't have a problem with the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist.  I myself believe that, and it is what started me on my journey to Anglicanism.  I just don't understand the Eucharist being a true and proper sacrifice.

And it certainly is a sacrifice. Each Divine Liturgy we sing that it is "a mercy of peace, a sacrifice of grace."

The words that best sum this up, in my opinion, were never intended to do so, and come from a Reformed Protestant theologian of the 20th century. Karl Barth stated that the cross was "an eternal event that occurred within history."

Christ was crucified once, but we eternally partake of that sacrifice, and enter into it again in each Divine Liturgy. You say you already believe Christ is present in his "blood shed" and his "body broken"...if they are truly shed and broken, it is not, then, a sacrifice? Not that we crucify Christ again and again, but that we eternally partake of that moment which divided history, ransomed Sheol and redemmed humanity.

That is a very helpful quote from Barth in this context. Shocked

So, if the Eucharist is Christ's eternal sacrifice made present in our midst, let me ask you this.  In the RCC, your sins you have committed that week are remitted at the Mass, and you leave the Mass "justified", in the Western sense of the word.  As you continue along in the weak, however, your sins build up, and you become unclean.  But once you go to the sacrifice of the Mass, your sins are atoned for once again.  Is this the Orthodox view of the Eucharist?  In my mind, the Catholic view unwittingly continues the tradition of the Old Covenant. Huh

Again, thank you for your help!

Ehhh...? Lol. "justification", in the Western sense is part of what the Orthodox call deification, or theosis. We struggle to follow the example of Christ through the teachings of the Church by alms, fasting, prayer, etc. and in this way, we come to be "partakers of the divine nature" as St. Peter writes in his epistle. This includes participation in the sacramental life of the Church, which is a mysterious and grace-filled interaction with God through the Church. The principle mystery is, of course, the Eucharist, which is for the remission of sins. However, we also prepare ourselves for the Eucharist through fasting, pre-communion prayers and confession. Of course, confession is also for the remission of sins. Yet, not all Orthodox confess before each Eucharist, depending on their tradition. Baptism is surely for the remission of sins prior to entering the Church. Yet, we also make public and general confessions for the remission of sins throughout the liturigcal life of the Church through prayers at the divine services.

My point is to demonstrate that Orthodoxy does not look at salvation strictly as a legal interaction. Surely that is a valid understanding, but it is also simply an analogy which does not fully communicate the mystery of grace and salvation we receive. God is not a system, He is a person (actually, He's three of them!). This is the failing of scholastic theology, which never developed in the Orthodox Church, and therefore all of our theology is in some way "mystic theology." There is no separation in the Eastern tradition of the "mystics" and the "scholars." For a theologian is one who prays. All is interconnected.

And so...does the Eucharist cleanse us of our sins? Yes. Do we sin after we partake? Yes. Does the Eucharist then cleanse us again? Yes. Orthodoxy affirms all of these things. However, must we understand that God has established a system in which He works, and there is absolutely nothing further to being "justified"? Absolutely not.
Logged

"Hades is not a place, no, but a state of the soul. It begins here on earth. Just so, paradise begins in the soul of a man here in the earthly life. Here we already have contact with the divine..." -St. John, Wonderworker of Shanghai and San Francisco, Homily On the Sunday of Orthodoxy
FormerReformer
Convertodox of the convertodox
Site Supporter
Archon
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: I'll take (e) for "all of the above"
Posts: 2,440



WWW
« Reply #11 on: January 15, 2011, 12:54:56 PM »

 When we partake of the Eucharist we are not sacrificing Christ anew, but rather receiving from that only sacrifice, partaking not of a dead God, but rather the Living Flesh and Blood of God Incarnate.

So the Eucharist is Christ's eternal sacrifice on the Cross made present in our midst of which we partake?  Is that the proper understanding?
I don't have a problem with the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist.  I myself believe that, and it is what started me on my journey to Anglicanism.  I just don't understand the Eucharist being a true and proper sacrifice.

And it certainly is a sacrifice. Each Divine Liturgy we sing that it is "a mercy of peace, a sacrifice of grace."

The words that best sum this up, in my opinion, were never intended to do so, and come from a Reformed Protestant theologian of the 20th century. Karl Barth stated that the cross was "an eternal event that occurred within history."

Christ was crucified once, but we eternally partake of that sacrifice, and enter into it again in each Divine Liturgy. You say you already believe Christ is present in his "blood shed" and his "body broken"...if they are truly shed and broken, it is not, then, a sacrifice? Not that we crucify Christ again and again, but that we eternally partake of that moment which divided history, ransomed Sheol and redemmed humanity.

That is a very helpful quote from Barth in this context. Shocked

So, if the Eucharist is Christ's eternal sacrifice made present in our midst, let me ask you this.  In the RCC, your sins you have committed that week are remitted at the Mass, and you leave the Mass "justified", in the Western sense of the word.  As you continue along in the weak, however, your sins build up, and you become unclean.  But once you go to the sacrifice of the Mass, your sins are atoned for once again.  Is this the Orthodox view of the Eucharist?  In my mind, the Catholic view unwittingly continues the tradition of the Old Covenant. Huh

Again, thank you for your help!

Think of it less as a legal terminology and more in line with medicine.  Indeed, it is the Medicine of Immortality, as are all the Mysteries of the Church.  It's less about sin "building up" throughout the week and more of it being like a disease or cancer.  Baptism is the initial dose that sets us up on the path of recovery, and the Eucharist is our weekly (or even daily, if one is fortunate enough to be near a parish or monastery that has a daily Liturgy) booster shot. 
Logged

"Funny," said Lancelot, "how the people who can't pray say that prayers are not answered, however much the people who can pray say they are."  TH White

Oh, no: I've succumbed to Hyperdoxy!
Buzzbait
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Faith: Anglican
Jurisdiction: The Episcopal Church
Posts: 7


« Reply #12 on: January 15, 2011, 01:25:39 PM »

Benjamin, I don't think that a proper understanding of the classical Reformers boils down to just justification.  I understand salvation as the ordo salutis: justification, adoption, sanctification, and glorification.  Justification is just the first step.  If justification was it, salvation would be very incomplete. Smiley


I am going to try to formulate what these posts have explained to me in my own words.  That's how I learn best.  Correct me if I am wrong.  Smiley  So, at the Cross, our sins are remitted by God once and for all, and we are truly forgiven.  Now, the Eucharist is the Cross made present and real in the Divine Liturgy.  Therefore, at the Eucharist, forgiveness is applied to us?  Just like our forgiveness is applied to us when we realize our sins and beg the Father's forgiveness?  Am I wrong on this? *rubs throbbing temple* Huh
Logged
Buzzbait
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Faith: Anglican
Jurisdiction: The Episcopal Church
Posts: 7


« Reply #13 on: January 15, 2011, 01:27:19 PM »

In the medicine analogy of FormerReformer, the medicine will heal us, and its guaranteed, but it has to be applied to us and injected into us.
Logged
augustin717
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: The other ROC
Posts: 5,635



« Reply #14 on: January 15, 2011, 01:40:45 PM »

Quote
I don't think that a proper understanding of the classical Reformers boils down to just justification.  I understand salvation as the ordo salutis: justification, adoption, sanctification, and glorification.  Justification is just the first step.  If justification was it, salvation would be very incomplete.
Never heard this way of talking in our churches.  
Quote
Now, the Eucharist is the Cross made present and real in the Divine Liturgy.
Not only the Cross, but also the Descent into Hell, the Resurrection, the Ascending into Heavens, the Sitting at the Right Hand of the Father and the Second, Fearful and Glorious Coming, they are all remembered at the bloodless sacrifice.
« Last Edit: January 15, 2011, 01:43:47 PM by augustin717 » Logged
Benjamin the Red
Recovering Calvinist
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Catholic
Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church in America, Diocese of Dallas and the South ||| American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese
Posts: 1,601


Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me.


« Reply #15 on: January 15, 2011, 02:48:24 PM »

Benjamin, I don't think that a proper understanding of the classical Reformers boils down to just justification.  I understand salvation as the ordo salutis: justification, adoption, sanctification, and glorification.  Justification is just the first step.  If justification was it, salvation would be very incomplete. Smiley

This is why I said justification is a part of what Orthodoxy calls theosis. We are truly sanctified through baptism, justified by Christ's sacrifice, adopted as sons, etc. My point is more in stating that Orthodoxy generally has a completely different way of looking at/talking about their faith than that found in Western theology.
« Last Edit: January 15, 2011, 02:49:09 PM by Benjamin the Red » Logged

"Hades is not a place, no, but a state of the soul. It begins here on earth. Just so, paradise begins in the soul of a man here in the earthly life. Here we already have contact with the divine..." -St. John, Wonderworker of Shanghai and San Francisco, Homily On the Sunday of Orthodoxy
Buzzbait
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Faith: Anglican
Jurisdiction: The Episcopal Church
Posts: 7


« Reply #16 on: January 15, 2011, 04:57:31 PM »

Benjamin, I don't think that a proper understanding of the classical Reformers boils down to just justification.  I understand salvation as the ordo salutis: justification, adoption, sanctification, and glorification.  Justification is just the first step.  If justification was it, salvation would be very incomplete. Smiley

This is why I said justification is a part of what Orthodoxy calls theosis. We are truly sanctified through baptism, justified by Christ's sacrifice, adopted as sons, etc. My point is more in stating that Orthodoxy generally has a completely different way of looking at/talking about their faith than that found in Western theology.

Oh, ok.  I am with you now.  Smiley

Is my way of thinking of the Eucharist right if I were to include ALL of Christ's life in the Eucharist?
Logged
ialmisry
There's nothing John of Damascus can't answer
Warned
Hypatos
*****************
Offline Offline

Faith: جامعي Arab confesssing the Orthodox Faith of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church
Jurisdiction: Antioch (for now), but my heart belongs to Alexandria
Posts: 37,963



« Reply #17 on: January 16, 2011, 12:38:14 AM »

Benjamin, I don't think that a proper understanding of the classical Reformers boils down to just justification.  I understand salvation as the ordo salutis: justification, adoption, sanctification, and glorification.  Justification is just the first step.  If justification was it, salvation would be very incomplete. Smiley


I am going to try to formulate what these posts have explained to me in my own words.  That's how I learn best.  Correct me if I am wrong.  Smiley  So, at the Cross, our sins are remitted by God once and for all, and we are truly forgiven.  Now, the Eucharist is the Cross made present and real in the Divine Liturgy.  Therefore, at the Eucharist, forgiveness is applied to us?  Just like our forgiveness is applied to us when we realize our sins and beg the Father's forgiveness?  Am I wrong on this? *rubs throbbing temple* Huh


Heb. 13:10 We have an altar from which those who serve the tent have no right to eat. 11 For the bodies of those animals whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest as a sacrifice for sin are burned outside the camp. 12 So Jesus also suffered outside the gate in order to sanctify the people through his own blood. 13 Therefore let us go forth to Him outside the camp and bear the abuse he endured. 14 For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city which is to come. 15 Through Him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that acknowledge His name.

"Applied." That's Calvinist. The Orthodox partake of the sacrifice.  Forgiveness is not forensic.  It is revitalizing.

As for the bloodless sacrifice and Calvery, replaying news footage of, say, the tearing down of the Berlin Wall, doesn't redo it, but it does make it present.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2011, 12:42:52 AM 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
ialmisry
There's nothing John of Damascus can't answer
Warned
Hypatos
*****************
Offline Offline

Faith: جامعي Arab confesssing the Orthodox Faith of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church
Jurisdiction: Antioch (for now), but my heart belongs to Alexandria
Posts: 37,963



« Reply #18 on: January 16, 2011, 12:43:33 AM »

Benjamin, I don't think that a proper understanding of the classical Reformers boils down to just justification.  I understand salvation as the ordo salutis: justification, adoption, sanctification, and glorification.  Justification is just the first step.  If justification was it, salvation would be very incomplete. Smiley

This is why I said justification is a part of what Orthodoxy calls theosis. We are truly sanctified through baptism, justified by Christ's sacrifice, adopted as sons, etc. My point is more in stating that Orthodoxy generally has a completely different way of looking at/talking about their faith than that found in Western theology.

Oh, ok.  I am with you now.  Smiley

Is my way of thinking of the Eucharist right if I were to include ALL of Christ's life in the Eucharist?
Of course. He poured all His Life into it.
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
Buzzbait
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Faith: Anglican
Jurisdiction: The Episcopal Church
Posts: 7


« Reply #19 on: January 17, 2011, 01:06:25 AM »

Benjamin, I don't think that a proper understanding of the classical Reformers boils down to just justification.  I understand salvation as the ordo salutis: justification, adoption, sanctification, and glorification.  Justification is just the first step.  If justification was it, salvation would be very incomplete. Smiley


I am going to try to formulate what these posts have explained to me in my own words.  That's how I learn best.  Correct me if I am wrong.  Smiley  So, at the Cross, our sins are remitted by God once and for all, and we are truly forgiven.  Now, the Eucharist is the Cross made present and real in the Divine Liturgy.  Therefore, at the Eucharist, forgiveness is applied to us?  Just like our forgiveness is applied to us when we realize our sins and beg the Father's forgiveness?  Am I wrong on this? *rubs throbbing temple* Huh


"Applied." That's Calvinist. The Orthodox partake of the sacrifice.  Forgiveness is not forensic.  It is revitalizing.


Ah, ok.  Most of my life was spent as a Calvinist, so my entire theological vocabulary is Calvisnism. Tongue

So, when Orthodoxy speaks of the Eucharist "remitting" sins, what does that exactly mean?  Obviously, I have yet to acquire the eastern way of viewing things. Smiley
Logged
Seraphim98
High Elder
******
Offline Offline

Posts: 566



« Reply #20 on: January 17, 2011, 01:26:54 AM »

Think of a cancer going into remission after treatment.  It both cleanses and helps cure our ailment.

It is not mechanical though it requires a measure of repentance on our part. That is its point of entry into our lives, so to speak.

As for the Holy Eucharist being a sacrifice, reference has already been made to it being "made present".  Among the prayers in the Liturgy are those which give thanks to God for what He has brought to pass for us, "The cross, the tomb, the resurrection on the third day, and the glorious second coming again in majesty…followed by "Thine own of Thine own we offer unto Thee." So we see we understand the Holy Gifts eschatologically…standing outside time and making present for us the whole economy of Christ's salvation.  

Consider the book of the Apocalypse. In it we are shown an image of the hosts of heaven assembled around a throne/altar upon which there is a lamb bearing the marks of slaughter.  Of course we know who this is..it is Christ.  Orthodox understand that there is only one worship, one liturgy in the whole of creation…that one pictured in the Revelation.  That is the worship of the Church.  Our worship on earth must be united to and expressive of that one heavenly worship in order to be worship at all. In that worship Christ is present bearing the marks of slaughter.  We receive Him in the Liturgy presented to us in the changed bread and wine in the Holy Chalice.  What you witness in the divine Liturgy is an ascent of the people to be made mystically present in that throng and Christ by the Holy Spirit meeting us to become mystically present in the Holy Eucharist.  It is Him, the eternal sacrifice, wounded from before the foundations of the world. To the degree that we meet Him, having come prepared to meet Him, with that same measure it is measured again unto us…the medicine of immortality.  

So it is no new sacrifice, no reslaughtering of the Christ, rather is is our being lifted up, joined to and being made partakers of the one Great Eternal Outpouring of Life antecedent to all creation and revealed to us from the precious and life giving Cross.
« Last Edit: January 17, 2011, 01:30:05 AM by Seraphim98 » Logged
Benjamin the Red
Recovering Calvinist
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Catholic
Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church in America, Diocese of Dallas and the South ||| American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese
Posts: 1,601


Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me.


« Reply #21 on: January 17, 2011, 10:09:37 AM »

Quote from: Buzzbait link=topic=32893.msg520912#msg520912

Ah, ok.  Most of my life was spent as a Calvinist, so my entire theological vocabulary is Calvisnism. Tongue

So, when Orthodoxy speaks of the Eucharist "remitting" sins, what does that exactly mean?  Obviously, I have yet to acquire the eastern way of viewing things. Smiley

Oh, boy. I'm a former Calvinist myself...Presbyterian. I've had to relearn everything I thought I knew in order to begin to have an Orthodox perspective, and I'm still by no means perfect! It is a process that will take me some time, I'm sure.

Eastern theology is so different from anything in the West, even Catholicism, and even when they agree on the end result, the way in which something is explained is different due to categories and terminological differences. It's tough to come from a Western, systematic theology into the mystical theology of the East...but it's well worth it!
« Last Edit: January 17, 2011, 10:10:03 AM by Benjamin the Red » Logged

"Hades is not a place, no, but a state of the soul. It begins here on earth. Just so, paradise begins in the soul of a man here in the earthly life. Here we already have contact with the divine..." -St. John, Wonderworker of Shanghai and San Francisco, Homily On the Sunday of Orthodoxy
Cleopas
Bible Thumping, Tongue Talking, Faith Walking Christian
Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Jurisdiction: Charismatic Evangelical
Posts: 445


If I'm my own Pope then I claim infalliablity. Ha!

perfecthart
WWW
« Reply #22 on: January 21, 2011, 03:02:03 AM »

An interjection of inquiry here, if I may ...

For those who practice confession in preparation for receiving the eucharist, why? Isn't that sort of an ecclesiastical "double jeopardy" and/or "double dipping"? I mean if your sins have just been remitted in confession, why do they need to be remitted again in the Eucharist?
Logged

Cleopas
Christopher Hart

"Every one, though born of God in an instant, yet undoubtedly grows by slow degrees” -- John Wesley
Shlomlokh
主哀れめよ!
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: Bulgarian
Posts: 1,299



« Reply #23 on: January 21, 2011, 10:37:44 AM »

An interjection of inquiry here, if I may ...

For those who practice confession in preparation for receiving the eucharist, why? Isn't that sort of an ecclesiastical "double jeopardy" and/or "double dipping"? I mean if your sins have just been remitted in confession, why do they need to be remitted again in the Eucharist?
Quote
Now in this that I declare unto you I praise you not, that ye come together not for the better, but for the worse. For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it.

For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you. When ye come together therefore into one place, this is not to eat the Lord's supper. For in eating every one taketh before other his own supper: and one is hungry, and another is drunken. What? have ye not houses to eat and to drink in? or despise ye the church of God, and shame them that have not? what shall I say to you? shall I praise you in this? I praise you not. For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, that the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread: And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, this cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.

For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come. Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.-1 Corinthians 11:17-30

In Christ,
Andrew
Logged

"I will pour out my prayer unto the Lord, and to Him will I proclaim my grief; for with evils my soul is filled, and my life unto hades hath drawn nigh, and like Jonah I will pray: From corruption raise me up, O God." -Ode VI, Irmos of the Supplicatory Canon to the Theotokos
Cleopas
Bible Thumping, Tongue Talking, Faith Walking Christian
Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Jurisdiction: Charismatic Evangelical
Posts: 445


If I'm my own Pope then I claim infalliablity. Ha!

perfecthart
WWW
« Reply #24 on: January 21, 2011, 05:22:33 PM »

Andrew,

Thank you for the reply. While I see the intended connection between judgment and confession before partaking in the supper, it still doesn't answer my question. Perhaps I wasn't clear. Let me rephrase, please.

If sins are forgiven in confession then how is the meal for forgiveness of sin as well? Why do they need to be forgiven twice?
« Last Edit: January 21, 2011, 05:26:23 PM by Cleopas » Logged

Cleopas
Christopher Hart

"Every one, though born of God in an instant, yet undoubtedly grows by slow degrees” -- John Wesley
Alveus Lacuna
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Posts: 6,951



« Reply #25 on: January 21, 2011, 05:41:07 PM »

If sins are forgiven in confession then how is the meal for forgiveness of sin as well? Why do they need to be forgiven twice?

It's not about applying forgiveness to us, or getting the slate wiped clean. Those things happen, but they are secondary. What the real focus is on is partaking of God's very Divine Nature.

You're thinking about the ultimate end being "forgiveness", while for us Orthodox Christians the ultimate end is to share in God's divinity. So confession and receiving the Eucharist go together because the acknowledgement of our state of sinfulness quickens our souls and calls us to repentance. Then the live coal of the Body and Blood enters our hearts and purifies us, making our cold hearts warm again. As we take in His Body and Blood, we come closer to the Divine Nature, and as we repent of the sins confessed, so also are we further transformed. That's why another poster made the distinction between application of forgiveness in a forensic sense versus a "revitalization". We are not only forgiven in the sense that God puts on Jesus-colored glasses and can't see our sins. Someone can forgive you without cleaning up the mess, but a remission cleans up the mess as well.

The correct view is rather that confession and the Eucharist work together in synergy to not only restore the divine image that was tarnished with the Fall, but to actually move the person further into God's nature for all eternity. Theosis is eternal.
Logged
Cleopas
Bible Thumping, Tongue Talking, Faith Walking Christian
Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Jurisdiction: Charismatic Evangelical
Posts: 445


If I'm my own Pope then I claim infalliablity. Ha!

perfecthart
WWW
« Reply #26 on: January 21, 2011, 05:59:38 PM »

So then eating the supper is more about fellowship with God, not forgiveness of sins. No?

Then too, you seem to also be saying that confession forgives sins, but eating the supper remits them. Is that right?

Just trying to understand the function of the supper in your context. Thanks for your replies.
Logged

Cleopas
Christopher Hart

"Every one, though born of God in an instant, yet undoubtedly grows by slow degrees” -- John Wesley
Alveus Lacuna
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Posts: 6,951



« Reply #27 on: January 21, 2011, 06:10:46 PM »

So then eating the supper is more about fellowship with God, not forgiveness of sins. No?

Our entire life is about union with God. Sin interrupts that union/communion, so to be forgiven for an offense is only the beginning of a return to union. As we move closer into God, our sins are burned up by His purity. So there is no separation. Union with God is forgiveness of sins, and ultimately freedom from and victory over sin to live perfectly in God's holiness.
Logged
Cleopas
Bible Thumping, Tongue Talking, Faith Walking Christian
Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Jurisdiction: Charismatic Evangelical
Posts: 445


If I'm my own Pope then I claim infalliablity. Ha!

perfecthart
WWW
« Reply #28 on: January 21, 2011, 06:28:33 PM »

So then eating the supper is more about fellowship with God, not forgiveness of sins. No?

Our entire life is about union with God. Sin interrupts that union/communion, so to be forgiven for an offense is only the beginning of a return to union. As we move closer into God, our sins are burned up by His purity. So there is no separation. Union with God is forgiveness of sins, and ultimately freedom from and victory over sin to live perfectly in God's holiness.

I understand the interconnectedness. Nevertheless, I am trying to understand the distinct and/or primary difference regarding the effect of the supper versus confession on confessed sins. Andrew said both forgive sin.

Or are you saying, not to incite contention, that Andrew is mistaken in his explanation?
Logged

Cleopas
Christopher Hart

"Every one, though born of God in an instant, yet undoubtedly grows by slow degrees” -- John Wesley
Alveus Lacuna
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Posts: 6,951



« Reply #29 on: January 21, 2011, 10:28:16 PM »

I understand the interconnectedness. Nevertheless, I am trying to understand the distinct and/or primary difference regarding the effect of the supper versus confession on confessed sins.

I think that the questions you're asking likely do not have any official answers as they would in Roman Catholicism. I could never imagine an Orthodox person asking these kinds of questions. Just like we don't separate faith and works, we don't separate confession and Communion. They're two peas in a pod (not that one absolutely requires the other, as sometimes people are communed without confession depending on the theological tradition). I have also gone to confession and then not attended the liturgy the next day to receive Communion. So I guess if you're trying to nail down mechanics, I would concede that forgiveness takes place during both/either/or.

We're generally not interested in the mechanics. For example, there is no one "pinpoint-able" moment when the transformation of the Eucharist takes place, and nobody is in a fit over it.

In trying to draw some distinction between the forgiveness that takes place in either one, the only thing that immediately came to me was that one big difference is that Holy Communion can kill you, while I haven't personally heard of anyone dying from a confession!

Sorry that I can't satisfactorily answer your question. Perhaps the real Orthodox answer here about how "it works" is simply "We don't know. That's why it's called a Mystery."
« Last Edit: January 21, 2011, 10:35:18 PM by Alveus Lacuna » Logged
ignatius
Baptacathadox
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Roman Catholic > Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA - Diocese of the South
Posts: 1,690


My Son Aidan... :-)


« Reply #30 on: January 23, 2011, 05:38:27 PM »

Grace and Peace,

A greater understanding of the Catholic View of the Liturgy can be gained by reading the CONSTITUTION ON THE SACRED LITURGY - SACROSANCTUM CONCILIUM from Vatican II... http://www.ewtn.com/library/COUNCILS/V2LITUR.HTM

8. In the earthly liturgy we take part in a foretaste of that heavenly liturgy which is celebrated in the holy city of Jerusalem toward which we journey as pilgrims, where Christ is sitting at the right hand of God, a minister of the holies and of the true tabernacle (22); we sing a hymn to the Lord's glory with all the warriors of the heavenly army; venerating the memory of the saints, we hope for some part and fellowship with them; we eagerly await the Saviour, Our Lord Jesus Christ, until He, our life, shall appear and we too will appear with Him in glory (23).

9. The sacred liturgy does not exhaust the entire activity of the Church. Before men can come to the liturgy they must be called to faith and to conversion: "How then are they to call upon him in whom they have not yet believed? But how are they to believe him whom they have not heard? And how are they to hear if no one preaches? And how are men to preach unless they be sent?" (Rom. 10:14-15).

Therefore the Church announces the good tidings of salvation to those who do not believe, so that all men may know the true God and Jesus Christ whom He has sent, and may be converted from their ways, doing penance (24). To believers also the Church must ever preach faith and penance, she must prepare them for the sacraments, teach them to observe all that Christ has commanded (25), and invite them to all the works of charity, piety, and the apostolate. For all these works make it clear that Christ's faithful, though not of this world, are to be the light of the world and to glorify the Father before men.

10. Nevertheless the liturgy is the summit toward which the activity of the Church is directed; at the same time it is the font from which all her power flows. For the aim and object of apostolic works is that all who are made sons of God by faith and baptism should come together to praise God in the midst of His Church, to take part in the sacrifice, and to eat the Lord's supper.

The liturgy in its turn moves the faithful, filled with "the paschal sacraments," to be "one in holiness" (26); it prays that "they may hold fast in their lives to what they have grasped by their faith" (27); the renewal in the eucharist of the covenant between the Lord and man draws the faithful into the compelling love of Christ and sets them on fire. From the liturgy, therefore, and especially from the eucharist, as from a font, grace is poured forth upon us; and the sanctification of men in Christ and the glorification of God, to which all other activities of the Church are directed as toward their end, is achieved in the most efficacious possible way.

11. But in order that the liturgy may be able to produce its full effects, it is necessary that the faithful come to it with proper dispositions, that their minds should be attuned to their voices, and that they should cooperate with divine grace lest they receive it in vain (28) . Pastors of souls must therefore realize that, when the liturgy is celebrated, something more is required than the mere observation of the laws governing valid and licit celebration; it is their duty also to ensure that the faithful take part fully aware of what they are doing, actively engaged in the rite, and enriched by its effects.

12. The spiritual life, however, is not limited solely to participation in the liturgy. The Christian is indeed called to pray with his brethren, but he must also enter into his chamber to pray to the Father, in secret (29); yet more, according to the teaching of the Apostle, he should pray without ceasing (30). We learn from the same Apostle that we must always bear about in our body the dying of Jesus, so that the life also of Jesus may be made manifest in our bodily frame (31). This is why we ask the Lord in the sacrifice of the Mass that, "receiving the offering of the spiritual victim," he may fashion us for himself "as an eternal gift" (32).
Logged

St Basil the Great (330-379 A.D.): “I think then that the one goal of all who are really and truly serving the Lord ought to be to bring back to union the churches who have at different times and in diverse manners divided from one another.”
Mivac
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 247


« Reply #31 on: January 24, 2011, 11:00:26 AM »

So then eating the supper is more about fellowship with God, not forgiveness of sins. No?

Our entire life is about union with God. Sin interrupts that union/communion, so to be forgiven for an offense is only the beginning of a return to union. As we move closer into God, our sins are burned up by His purity. So there is no separation. Union with God is forgiveness of sins, and ultimately freedom from and victory over sin to live perfectly in God's holiness.

I understand the interconnectedness. Nevertheless, I am trying to understand the distinct and/or primary difference regarding the effect of the supper versus confession on confessed sins. Andrew said both forgive sin.

Or are you saying, not to incite contention, that Andrew is mistaken in his explanation?

Forgiveness of sins is one thing, receiving because of forgiveness of sins is another, or completion of the forgiveness process.  At least from my twisted view.  An example,  My wife and I have a sin issue come up between us.  We ask for forgiveness but we still stand apart a few feet.  We then embrace each other and hold each other in a long hug, it is in that moment the wound of the heart is healed, this has occurred because of the forgiveness of sins, the cycle of forgiveness is complete and unity/union is restored in the embrace.  My wife comes to feel the renew of our unity/union when I give  her an embrace.  In a similar way speaking of Christ and His Church, sins are forgiven, in the Eucharist the union is restored.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2011, 11:27:00 AM by Mivac » Logged
Tags: communion 
Pages: 1   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.18 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Page created in 0.14 seconds with 59 queries.