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Author Topic: Of vs. In  (Read 939 times) Average Rating: 0
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Ben
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« on: June 13, 2004, 08:59:38 PM »

I recently went to a OO website and read this:

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In the English language, two letters have caused the most tragic breach in all of Christendom. In the Aramaic langauge, the difference is in one letter, Dolath vs. Beth--the difference between the two is a small line on the bottom and dot in the center. These prepositions while short and subtle, contain within their meanings the difference between truth and fiction. In as far as these refer to the language of Chalcedon, the Oriental Orthodox follow the traditional terminology using the preposition "of," whereas the Byzantine Orthodox use the preposition "in."

The question then comes in how these terms are used in regards to Christology. In the Nicene-Contantinopolian Creed, we see that "Christ was conceived of the Holy Spirit and of the Virgin Mary," thus the foundation is made clear. In terms of Christology the Oriental understanding is that Christ is "One Nature--the Logos Incarnate," of the full humanity and full divinity. The Byzantine understanding is that Christ is in two natures, full humanity and full divinity.

Just as all of us are of our mother and father and not in our mother and father, so too is the nature of Christ. If Christ is in full humanity and in full divinity, then He is separate in two persons as the Nestorians teach. Imagine your nature in your mother and your father; you are then two different people. If however your nature is of your mother and your father, then you are one person.

This is the linguistic difference which separated the Orientals from the Byzantines.


It really helped me better understand the difference between "of" and "in". I always understood there existed linguistic differences between the OO and EO, but this little essay helped me better grasp the situation. I know its just baby steps for those of you better educated in this area, but at least its a few little steps in the right direction!

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"I prefer to be accused unjustly, for then I have nothing to reproach myself with, and joyfully offer this to the good Lord. Then I humble myself at the thought that I am indeed capable of doing the thing of which I have been accused. " - Saint
Arystarcus
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« Reply #1 on: June 14, 2004, 03:47:55 AM »

Ben,

That was a most interesting little tidbit that you posted - thank you!

I can honestly say that lately I have been wondering if all (or ar least some of) the schisms and seperations between the Apostolic Churches have been caused by basic human error, especially in regards to matters of definition - such as the issues that divide the Oriental Orthodox from the Eastern Orthodox and the both of them from the Catholic Church (in Rome).

I know I am looking at it all through rose tinted glasses, but it appears (to me anyways) that what caused the division between the Non-Chalcedonian Christians and the Chalcedonian Christians may have been a misunderstanding of eachother's terminology.

The same could also possibly be said about the division that split the Chacedonian Christians into the Eastern Orthodox Churches and the Catholic Churches under the Holy Father in Rome - all because of the "filioque".

I would like to believe that if the opposing sides in any of the above situations had merely humbled themselves and taken the time to get together and make an attempt to try and truly understand eachother and their terminology, that there would be a Unified Church on the earth right now - which would be quite a witness to the world, don't you think?

I mean, it did happen with the very Apostles themselves - even as Christ Jesus was physically among them. There are examples of it in the Holy Gospels and throughout the rest of the New Testament.

I guess that is what happens when the Church is composed of human beings who sin, who misunderstand, are egotistical, self-centered and refuse to try to understand eachother because if something doesn't ring true to us those who oppose my way of thought are wrong and should be anathemized.

If this were truly the case, it would serve us right, wouldn't it?

Now I know that I have completely oversimplified everything, but I just thought that I would share what I have been mulling over in my mind as of late.

Feel free to correct me as well as to share your own thoughts.

Please remember me in your prayers.

In Christ,
Aaron
« Last Edit: June 14, 2004, 03:58:42 AM by Arystarcus » Logged
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