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Author Topic: Is Protestant Eschatology Creeping into Orthodoxy?  (Read 3269 times) Average Rating: 0
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88Devin12
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« on: April 03, 2011, 05:59:55 AM »

After reading some of the things written by Elder Paisios, and knowing about things said by Fr. Seraphim Rose, it's gotten me to wondering, has Protestant Eschatology and modernized interpretations of scriptures crept into Orthodox circles?

By this I'm talking about the gradual (seeming) rejection of the traditional view held by Orthodox of "Partial Preterism" (that is, belief that most, but not all of what is in Revelation has already occurred historically).

I also am talking about belief that such things as: one-world-government, one-world-currency, identity card/chip (with 666/616), Third Temple, one-world-religion, a Great Apostasy etc... are all going to happen before Christ comes.

Personally I find this to be very incorrect and un-Orthodox. Why in God's name are we putting pre-conditions on the Second Coming of Christ? Aren't we supposed to ALWAYS be watchful and ready for his Second Coming? Weren't we told that it could be any moment?
How then can we possibly say that these things are sort of pre-conditions to his second coming?

How in the world can we say there is going to be a Great Apostasy when Christ himself told us that the Gates of Hell will absolutely never, EVER triumph against his Church? That the Church is the unblemished and pure bride of Christ? How can we possibly say that everyone (or nearly everyone) will desert her in the end? To me that is simply horribly un-Orthodox and borders on blasphemy against Christ and his Holy Church.

Aren't these statements by such venerable men as Elder Paisios and Fr. Seraphim Rose simply going against everything the Fathers and Saints say about the end?

Is it at all possible that Protestant Eschatology and Personal Interpretation has crept into our Church and has taken precedence over reading of the Church Fathers and Saints on these subjects?
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« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2011, 01:22:48 AM »

Have you even bothered to read what the Scriptures and the holy fathers have to say about the times shortly before the Antichrist, before going on your rant? Of course there will be an apostasy before the end. But it will not engulf the whole church, and Christ will win in the end.
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Justin Kissel
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« Reply #2 on: April 04, 2011, 01:39:45 AM »

Is it at all possible that Protestant Eschatology and Personal Interpretation has crept into our Church and has taken precedence over reading of the Church Fathers and Saints on these subjects?

It's possible that it's creeped in for some members, maybe even some rather prominent members, but I don't think it's really that widespread... (?) I'm not familiar enough with the writings of Elder Paisios, but as for Fr. Seraphim Rose, I was under the impression that his eschatology was based on Orthodox sources. I await correction on that if I'm wrong...

Have you even bothered to read what the Scriptures and the holy fathers have to say about the times shortly before the Antichrist, before going on your rant? Of course there will be an apostasy before the end. But it will not engulf the whole church, and Christ will win in the end.

You should write a book... you could call it "How To Lose Allies And Alienate People"  Tongue
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« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2011, 02:29:07 AM »

By this I'm talking about the gradual (seeming) rejection of the traditional view held by Orthodox of "Partial Preterism" (that is, belief that most, but not all of what is in Revelation has already occurred historically).
Just because a prophecy was fulfilled once doesn't mean it can't be fulfilled again in its final "fulfilled type" form. We need only look to prophecies in the OT that ended up pointing both to Christ's coming and to an earlier event in order to see this.
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« Reply #4 on: April 04, 2011, 04:26:50 AM »

After some investigation, I would have to say my fears are not quite being fulfilled and certain viewpoints that claim to have been espoused by certain saintly figures may not actually be their viewpoints.

Reminder: Read things with cautiousness and discernment!
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« Reply #5 on: April 04, 2011, 06:52:44 AM »

Fr. Roses's denunciations of New Age spirituality are largely derived from the writings of Constance Cumbey, who is I believe a Nazarene. Likewise his focus on creationism is derived from American Baptist sources.
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« Reply #6 on: April 04, 2011, 09:37:53 AM »

Fr. Roses's denunciations of New Age spirituality are largely derived from the writings of Constance Cumbey, who is I believe a Nazarene. Likewise his focus on creationism is derived from American Baptist sources.

Admittedly, he did consider all the charismatic and new age stuff as signs of the times, so to speak, but when I think of his views on the end times I think primarily of the book he edited on the Apocalypse, which was filled with patristic quotes, and didn't have a single Protestant quote (so far as I remember).
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« Reply #7 on: April 04, 2011, 09:58:51 AM »

Fr. Roses's denunciations of New Age spirituality are largely derived from the writings of Constance Cumbey, who is I believe a Nazarene. Likewise his focus on creationism is derived from American Baptist sources.

good Lord, gimme a break. his belief in Creationism has literally nothing to do with Baptist sources. go read his book.
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« Reply #8 on: April 04, 2011, 02:40:57 PM »

What I read of it, I read a decade ago. I'm not willing to go back to it given (a) it's probably buried deep within our library anyway, and (b) I don't hold with creationism anyway. But my recollection is that he repeats a lot of the dubious folk-science handed around in the Protestant creationist community.
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« Reply #9 on: April 04, 2011, 05:19:20 PM »

88Devin12
Fr. Paisius was a saint, real one. Saints don't talk for a chat. They don't say things that was not revealed to them. You and I can have protestant or any other heretic views. Saints have God revealed theology. You probably do not know much about monkhood and what a podvig (I don't know English equivalent of this Russian word) it is. One can't be a monk unless it is God's will. So be careful what you say next time about saints.

Besides Holy Scriptures say that. The Lord Jesus Christ Himself says it: there will be wars, rumors of wars and so on... before His second coming.
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« Reply #10 on: April 04, 2011, 05:23:50 PM »

Fwiw, I have seen some describe podvig as "spiritual struggle". Met. Laurus calls it "ascetic struggle," and for those who haven't read it, there's an excellent article by Met. Laurus on "The Ascetic Podvig of Living in the World" here.
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« Reply #11 on: April 04, 2011, 05:36:22 PM »

88Devin12
Fr. Paisius was a saint, real one. Saints don't talk for a chat. They don't say things that was not revealed to them. You and I can have protestant or any other heretic views. Saints have God revealed theology. You probably do not know much about monkhood and what a podvig (I don't know English equivalent of this Russian word) it is. One can't be a monk unless it is God's will. So be careful what you say next time about saints.

Besides Holy Scriptures say that. The Lord Jesus Christ Himself says it: there will be wars, rumors of wars and so on... before His second coming.

I don't think that we need to question each other's motivations or knowledge. Let the views stand on their own. Also, let's be careful in not stifling discussion by declaring what is permissible and what is not.
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« Reply #12 on: April 04, 2011, 05:55:28 PM »

88Devin12
Fr. Paisius was a saint, real one. Saints don't talk for a chat. They don't say things that was not revealed to them. You and I can have protestant or any other heretic views. Saints have God revealed theology. You probably do not know much about monkhood and what a podvig (I don't know English equivalent of this Russian word) it is. One can't be a monk unless it is God's will. So be careful what you say next time about saints.

Besides Holy Scriptures say that. The Lord Jesus Christ Himself says it: there will be wars, rumors of wars and so on... before His second coming.

I don't think that we need to question each other's motivations or knowledge. Let the views stand on their own. Also, let's be careful in not stifling discussion by declaring what is permissible and what is not.
I apologize. I did not really mean what view he should have. It is completely up to a person what he believes. What I meant is his view is not Orthodox view and if he is an Orthodox then he should be careful saying such things.

Again my apologies

God Bless
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« Reply #13 on: April 04, 2011, 09:06:09 PM »

88Devin12
Fr. Paisius was a saint, real one. Saints don't talk for a chat. They don't say things that was not revealed to them. You and I can have protestant or any other heretic views. Saints have God revealed theology. You probably do not know much about monkhood and what a podvig (I don't know English equivalent of this Russian word) it is. One can't be a monk unless it is God's will. So be careful what you say next time about saints.

Besides Holy Scriptures say that. The Lord Jesus Christ Himself says it: there will be wars, rumors of wars and so on... before His second coming.

I don't think that we need to question each other's motivations or knowledge. Let the views stand on their own. Also, let's be careful in not stifling discussion by declaring what is permissible and what is not.
I apologize. I did not really mean what view he should have. It is completely up to a person what he believes. What I meant is his view is not Orthodox view and if he is an Orthodox then he should be careful saying such things.

Again my apologies

God Bless

Thank you for your reaction. What a nice and productive way to carry on a discussion! God bless you too.
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« Reply #14 on: April 05, 2011, 02:03:55 AM »

ativan...

we must not fall into some kind of Orthodox Fundamentalism. Even the Church Fathers contradict one another, and so when a Saint says something, we need to investigate it and make sure it is in conformity with Orthodoxy.

After some investigation of the topic. It turns out that Elder Paisios may not have actually written certain things about the End Times. The articles that are on the internet have no citations, no sources. They are simply copy/pastes of one another and have been spread (it seems) by word of mouth. They have no basis to support themselves. Therefore we absolutely must question their authenticity and their validity.
You cannot believe everything you read on the internet.

The same can be said about Fr. Seraphim Rose. I've seen some articles on the internet that claim to be by him, yet have no references, no citations, no supporting backbone to show that they are authentically from him.

Again, the lesson here is that just because something on the internet claims to be from a Saint or from a Church Father, you absolutely MUST question it.

I'm not questioning the validity or the honor of the Saint. I'm merely recognizing that Saints are humans too, and during their lives, they also made mistakes and wrote things that aren't true. (take St. Augustine as an example)
I'm also recognizing that some people may write things (or may attribute something to) claiming it comes from the Saint when the Saint actually never said it.

Word-Of-Mouth rumors and hearsay have no basis. One can claim that "Elder Paisios said this..." but unless we have solid proof he said it, then I would say that it should be questioned until proven to be true.

This isn't UnOrthodox, this is called discernment. We are called in scripture to use discernment so that we are not deceived. Just as people (even today) falsely claim to be Christ, so too people will falsely claim to be a Saint, or who claim to know a secret knowledge passed on by that Saint.

I understand your point of view, but I'm just saying that we need to use discernment and proper judgement when reading certain things on the internet (and even in literature).
It isn't showing disrespect to a Saint, it's measuring what they said against Orthodoxy and against the Traditions and Church Fathers. If it measures up, then all is good. If it doesn't measure up, then they are wrong, even as a Saint.
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« Reply #15 on: April 05, 2011, 08:57:33 AM »

ativan...

we must not fall into some kind of Orthodox Fundamentalism. Even the Church Fathers contradict one another, and so when a Saint says something, we need to investigate it and make sure it is in conformity with Orthodoxy.

After some investigation of the topic. It turns out that Elder Paisios may not have actually written certain things about the End Times. The articles that are on the internet have no citations, no sources. They are simply copy/pastes of one another and have been spread (it seems) by word of mouth. They have no basis to support themselves. Therefore we absolutely must question their authenticity and their validity.
You cannot believe everything you read on the internet.

The same can be said about Fr. Seraphim Rose. I've seen some articles on the internet that claim to be by him, yet have no references, no citations, no supporting backbone to show that they are authentically from him.

Again, the lesson here is that just because something on the internet claims to be from a Saint or from a Church Father, you absolutely MUST question it.

I'm not questioning the validity or the honor of the Saint. I'm merely recognizing that Saints are humans too, and during their lives, they also made mistakes and wrote things that aren't true. (take St. Augustine as an example)
I'm also recognizing that some people may write things (or may attribute something to) claiming it comes from the Saint when the Saint actually never said it.

Word-Of-Mouth rumors and hearsay have no basis. One can claim that "Elder Paisios said this..." but unless we have solid proof he said it, then I would say that it should be questioned until proven to be true.

This isn't UnOrthodox, this is called discernment. We are called in scripture to use discernment so that we are not deceived. Just as people (even today) falsely claim to be Christ, so too people will falsely claim to be a Saint, or who claim to know a secret knowledge passed on by that Saint.

I understand your point of view, but I'm just saying that we need to use discernment and proper judgement when reading certain things on the internet (and even in literature).
It isn't showing disrespect to a Saint, it's measuring what they said against Orthodoxy and against the Traditions and Church Fathers. If it measures up, then all is good. If it doesn't measure up, then they are wrong, even as a Saint.

i dont know about Elder Paisios, but Fr. Seraphim definitely had things to say about the end times, you can hear it on his Living the Orthodox Worldview CD.

but the issue i have is that you seem to be saying you're more familiar with the Patristic tradition than were Elder Paisios and Fr. Seraphim. no offense, but i find that hard to believe. i say this because even before questioning the validity of the writings you found you were already labeling them as Protestant.
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« Reply #16 on: April 05, 2011, 09:14:07 AM »

ativan...

we must not fall into some kind of Orthodox Fundamentalism. Even the Church Fathers contradict one another, and so when a Saint says something, we need to investigate it and make sure it is in conformity with Orthodoxy.

After some investigation of the topic. It turns out that Elder Paisios may not have actually written certain things about the End Times. The articles that are on the internet have no citations, no sources. They are simply copy/pastes of one another and have been spread (it seems) by word of mouth. They have no basis to support themselves. Therefore we absolutely must question their authenticity and their validity.
You cannot believe everything you read on the internet.

The same can be said about Fr. Seraphim Rose. I've seen some articles on the internet that claim to be by him, yet have no references, no citations, no supporting backbone to show that they are authentically from him.

Again, the lesson here is that just because something on the internet claims to be from a Saint or from a Church Father, you absolutely MUST question it.

I'm not questioning the validity or the honor of the Saint. I'm merely recognizing that Saints are humans too, and during their lives, they also made mistakes and wrote things that aren't true. (take St. Augustine as an example)
I'm also recognizing that some people may write things (or may attribute something to) claiming it comes from the Saint when the Saint actually never said it.

Word-Of-Mouth rumors and hearsay have no basis. One can claim that "Elder Paisios said this..." but unless we have solid proof he said it, then I would say that it should be questioned until proven to be true.

This isn't UnOrthodox, this is called discernment. We are called in scripture to use discernment so that we are not deceived. Just as people (even today) falsely claim to be Christ, so too people will falsely claim to be a Saint, or who claim to know a secret knowledge passed on by that Saint.

I understand your point of view, but I'm just saying that we need to use discernment and proper judgement when reading certain things on the internet (and even in literature).
It isn't showing disrespect to a Saint, it's measuring what they said against Orthodoxy and against the Traditions and Church Fathers. If it measures up, then all is good. If it doesn't measure up, then they are wrong, even as a Saint.

i dont know about Elder Paisios, but Fr. Seraphim definitely had things to say about the end times, you can hear it on his Living the Orthodox Worldview CD.

but the issue i have is that you seem to be saying you're more familiar with the Patristic tradition than were Elder Paisios and Fr. Seraphim. no offense, but i find that hard to believe. i say this because even before questioning the validity of the writings you found you were already labeling them as Protestant.

jckstraw, I don't think that you understood my last post. I know Elder Paisios and Fr. Seraphim Rose said things about the End Times.
What I was talking about in my last post was that there are certain articles that have been posted on the internet that claim to be from Elder Paisios. In my last post I pointed out that those articles have no citations and nothing to support the idea that they come from Elder Paisios.

The articles I talked about claim to be written by Elder Paisios, and directly talk about 666 being some id card and also talk about a world-government, world-currency, etc...
However, I haven't found anything in those articles that supports the idea that they come from Elder Paisios.

As for Fr. Seraphim Rose, I know about what he says, and you can even go to YouTube and listen to a wonderful talk he gives about the End Times.
However, as I mentioned earlier, In my last post, I was addressing the fact that there are some articles on the internet that claim to be written by Fr. Seraphim Rose, but have no citations and no references, nothing that supports themselves and nothing that shows that they were actually written by him.

So my argument here is not that "I know Patristics and so-and-so isn't it". My argument is that so-and-so (in this case, Elder Paisios and Fr. Seraphim) may not have actually written certain articles that have been posted on the internet and that claim to be by them.

When I talked in my original post about "Protestant Eschatology", I had not yet done an investigation into these writings that claim to be from Elder Paisios. Since I posted it, I have looked into it, and there is nothing that supports them being written by Elder Paisios.
But my original post still stands, because there are some people in the Orthodox Church that do hold eschatologies that are very Protestant. One example is recently in Greece when some Priests held a protest in Athens because they believe the "identification cards" here in Greece are the 666 mark of the beast... This is simply stupid and doesn't have any support from what I've read from Fr. Seraphim Rose, Elder Paisios, or even the Patristics.

I'm currently listening to Dr. Jeannie Constantinou's podcast, "Beyond the Veil", which takes a Patristic look at the Book of Revelation. You can also find a video on YouTube with Fr. Seraphim Rose's speech about the end times, there is also a recording of an Elder talking about the end times, and a video of the Newmartyr Fr. Daniil Syosev speaking (briefly) about the end times.
So far, none of them, nor their analysis have ever suggested that this "Protestantized Eschatology" is right. None have said that the mark of the beast will be an id card, debit card, or microchip or anything. None of them have even suggested some world-government or world-economy/currency is going to be part of the Anti-Christ's plan.

What I'm suggesting in this thread, is that there are certain Orthodox that seem to be holding to a very Protestantized Eschatology, and that Eschatology isn't supported by the Fathers, the Saints, Fr. Seraphim Rose, Elder Paisios, or anyone else.
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« Reply #17 on: April 05, 2011, 09:52:05 AM »

What I read of it, I read a decade ago. I'm not willing to go back to it given (a) it's probably buried deep within our library anyway, and (b) I don't hold with creationism anyway. But my recollection is that he repeats a lot of the dubious folk-science handed around in the Protestant creationist community.

It's been some long time since I read some of the book and checked the footnotes, but it's in my mind that there are citations to Henry Morris who founded the Institute for Creation Research and who was a Baptist of some kind.

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« Reply #18 on: April 05, 2011, 11:25:04 AM »

What I read of it, I read a decade ago. I'm not willing to go back to it given (a) it's probably buried deep within our library anyway, and (b) I don't hold with creationism anyway. But my recollection is that he repeats a lot of the dubious folk-science handed around in the Protestant creationist community.

It's been some long time since I read some of the book and checked the footnotes, but it's in my mind that there are citations to Henry Morris who founded the Institute for Creation Research and who was a Baptist of some kind.



his belief in Creation is not BASED on anything even remotely Baptist. if you read the book, or his biography you see that he believes in Young Earth Creationism because he found that to be the teaching of the Fathers. His religious beliefs in this regard are entirely based on the Fathers. he does point to Creation Science people and organizations on the scientific side of the question. but he doesn't quote a single non-Orthodox source to validate his understanding of Genesis.
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« Reply #19 on: April 05, 2011, 11:59:11 AM »

What I read of it, I read a decade ago. I'm not willing to go back to it given (a) it's probably buried deep within our library anyway, and (b) I don't hold with creationism anyway. But my recollection is that he repeats a lot of the dubious folk-science handed around in the Protestant creationist community.

It's been some long time since I read some of the book and checked the footnotes, but it's in my mind that there are citations to Henry Morris who founded the Institute for Creation Research and who was a Baptist of some kind.

I thought the subject of this thread was eschatology...  Huh
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« Reply #20 on: April 05, 2011, 12:54:26 PM »

ativan...

we must not fall into some kind of Orthodox Fundamentalism. Even the Church Fathers contradict one another, and so when a Saint says something, we need to investigate it and make sure it is in conformity with Orthodoxy.

After some investigation of the topic. It turns out that Elder Paisios may not have actually written certain things about the End Times. The articles that are on the internet have no citations, no sources. They are simply copy/pastes of one another and have been spread (it seems) by word of mouth. They have no basis to support themselves. Therefore we absolutely must question their authenticity and their validity.
You cannot believe everything you read on the internet.

The same can be said about Fr. Seraphim Rose. I've seen some articles on the internet that claim to be by him, yet have no references, no citations, no supporting backbone to show that they are authentically from him.

Again, the lesson here is that just because something on the internet claims to be from a Saint or from a Church Father, you absolutely MUST question it.

I'm not questioning the validity or the honor of the Saint. I'm merely recognizing that Saints are humans too, and during their lives, they also made mistakes and wrote things that aren't true. (take St. Augustine as an example)
I'm also recognizing that some people may write things (or may attribute something to) claiming it comes from the Saint when the Saint actually never said it.

Word-Of-Mouth rumors and hearsay have no basis. One can claim that "Elder Paisios said this..." but unless we have solid proof he said it, then I would say that it should be questioned until proven to be true.

This isn't UnOrthodox, this is called discernment. We are called in scripture to use discernment so that we are not deceived. Just as people (even today) falsely claim to be Christ, so too people will falsely claim to be a Saint, or who claim to know a secret knowledge passed on by that Saint.

I understand your point of view, but I'm just saying that we need to use discernment and proper judgement when reading certain things on the internet (and even in literature).
It isn't showing disrespect to a Saint, it's measuring what they said against Orthodoxy and against the Traditions and Church Fathers. If it measures up, then all is good. If it doesn't measure up, then they are wrong, even as a Saint.
Actually Elder Paisios has said those things about end times - I've read it in his book (more correctly in a book about him since he never wrote books). And his not the only one saying that. Saint Lavrenty of Chernigov has said exactly same thing - This is a link in Russian if you can read it. Saint Seraphim of Sarov said same thing and many other Russian saints said same thing. Georgian saints say same thing. One of the Greatest saints and prophets of 20th century (who will be canonized very soon) Fr. Gabriel of Mtskheta said same thing. Nothing protestant is here. If you'd like I can translate some of them.

We are called to use discernment, OK. But how are we going to discern? By using logic and rational thinking to dissect scriptures? If so then we should not complain against Protestants. They do exactly same thing. Orthodox saints teach differently though. They say one has to be obedient to his spiritual teacher. One has to find spiritual teacher and have 100 % faith in whatever he says. They do say though before we find any teacher to use our mind and heart as guides that will help us to choose a teacher which we feel is a physician for our diseased soul. But once we find one we should believe everything they say we should trust him without questioning.
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« Reply #21 on: April 05, 2011, 02:01:17 PM »

ativan...

we must not fall into some kind of Orthodox Fundamentalism. Even the Church Fathers contradict one another, and so when a Saint says something, we need to investigate it and make sure it is in conformity with Orthodoxy.

After some investigation of the topic. It turns out that Elder Paisios may not have actually written certain things about the End Times. The articles that are on the internet have no citations, no sources. They are simply copy/pastes of one another and have been spread (it seems) by word of mouth. They have no basis to support themselves. Therefore we absolutely must question their authenticity and their validity.
You cannot believe everything you read on the internet.

The same can be said about Fr. Seraphim Rose. I've seen some articles on the internet that claim to be by him, yet have no references, no citations, no supporting backbone to show that they are authentically from him.

Again, the lesson here is that just because something on the internet claims to be from a Saint or from a Church Father, you absolutely MUST question it.

I'm not questioning the validity or the honor of the Saint. I'm merely recognizing that Saints are humans too, and during their lives, they also made mistakes and wrote things that aren't true. (take St. Augustine as an example)
I'm also recognizing that some people may write things (or may attribute something to) claiming it comes from the Saint when the Saint actually never said it.

Word-Of-Mouth rumors and hearsay have no basis. One can claim that "Elder Paisios said this..." but unless we have solid proof he said it, then I would say that it should be questioned until proven to be true.

This isn't UnOrthodox, this is called discernment. We are called in scripture to use discernment so that we are not deceived. Just as people (even today) falsely claim to be Christ, so too people will falsely claim to be a Saint, or who claim to know a secret knowledge passed on by that Saint.

I understand your point of view, but I'm just saying that we need to use discernment and proper judgement when reading certain things on the internet (and even in literature).
It isn't showing disrespect to a Saint, it's measuring what they said against Orthodoxy and against the Traditions and Church Fathers. If it measures up, then all is good. If it doesn't measure up, then they are wrong, even as a Saint.
Actually Elder Paisios has said those things about end times - I've read it in his book (more correctly in a book about him since he never wrote books). And his not the only one saying that. Saint Lavrenty of Chernigov has said exactly same thing - This is a link in Russian if you can read it. Saint Seraphim of Sarov said same thing and many other Russian saints said same thing. Georgian saints say same thing. One of the Greatest saints and prophets of 20th century (who will be canonized very soon) Fr. Gabriel of Mtskheta said same thing. Nothing protestant is here. If you'd like I can translate some of them.

We are called to use discernment, OK. But how are we going to discern? By using logic and rational thinking to dissect scriptures? If so then we should not complain against Protestants. They do exactly same thing. Orthodox saints teach differently though. They say one has to be obedient to his spiritual teacher. One has to find spiritual teacher and have 100 % faith in whatever he says. They do say though before we find any teacher to use our mind and heart as guides that will help us to choose a teacher which we feel is a physician for our diseased soul. But once we find one we should believe everything they say we should trust him without questioning.
ativan, I don't think you realize that using logic and rational thinking to analyze scripture is something almost every Church Father did. I would argue that this isn't what the Protestants do (especially in regard to Revelation).

Also, please answer this question... Why is it that none of these views (world-gov't, world-currency, id card=666, etc...) exist within Orthodoxy until after the 1800s?

Quote
One has to find spiritual teacher and have 100 % faith in whatever he says.
I have to say that is a bit wrong. We absolutely have to use discernment, even with Saints.

Again, you ignore my point about St. Augustine. St. Augustine is just as much worthy of being a Saint as any other Saint. But wouldn't you agree that he was wrong on many levels?
You cannot put 100% faith in a human being, or you will be led astray. (of course, unless that human being is Christ)

The Church Fathers contradict each other at times... What do you do with that? They all cannot be right, some have to be wrong and others have to be right. Does this mean that the ones that are wrong aren't Saintly? I really hope you don't say they aren't.

A Saint can be wrong, and there is nothing wrong with that. There are multiple Saints that are even wrong together. Does this mean they aren't Holy and that their writings are wrong? No it doesn't. It just means we still have to read their writings with care and discernment.

As such, we absolutely must read the Scriptures and our Saints with care and discernment.

look at 1 Thessalonians 4:17...
"Then we which are alive [and] remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord." (KJV)
One could say... "Gee, I know that passage is talking about the Second Coming... Come to think of it, it reminds me of Matthew 24:40-42..."
"Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left. Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left. Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come." (KJV)
Then you could say... "Wow, that seems to suggest that there will be some sort of event where we (the faithful) will be caught up into the skies and the others (the unfaithful) will be left."
Thus you have the idea of the rapture, which is NOT Orthodox and is horrible Biblical interpretation. Did these people base their doctrine on scriptures? Yes they did... I've even seen some use passages from the Fathers to support their views.
Does that mean they used proper discernment? No, in fact they used no discernment...

To use discernment is not the same thing as just reading scripture (or the Saints) faithfully.

If you want a good background on using the proper discernment for Revelation, I suggest this podcast by Dr. Jeannie Constantinou:
http://www.myocn.net/index.php/Beyond-the-Veil/
The first episode is "An Orthodox Introduction to the Apocalypse"...
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« Reply #22 on: April 05, 2011, 02:06:05 PM »

are you sure one-world gov't isnt there in Orthodoxy before 1800?
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« Reply #23 on: April 05, 2011, 02:07:00 PM »

Hey Orthonerds,

At least refer to the man properly:

Fr. Seraphim of Platina

EDIT: There goes my transcription job . . . .
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« Reply #24 on: April 05, 2011, 03:52:53 PM »

Hey Orthonerds,

At least refer to the man properly:

Fr. Seraphim of Platina

EDIT: There goes my transcription job . . . .

I do not believe there is anything "improper" with calling him "Fr. Seraphim Rose." That is how he is known by convention, and how he is often described by the fathers of St. Herman's, near Platina. It's sort of like insisting that bishops' names be written in all capital letters, with or without a + before them. It's a bit ridiculous.
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« Reply #25 on: April 05, 2011, 03:57:10 PM »

Hey Orthonerds,

At least refer to the man properly:

Fr. Seraphim of Platina

EDIT: There goes my transcription job . . . .

I do not believe there is anything "improper" with calling him "Fr. Seraphim Rose." That is how he is known by convention, and how he is often described by the fathers of St. Herman's, near Platina. It's sort of like insisting that bishops' names be written in all capital letters, with or without a + before them. It's a bit ridiculous.

Really, then why is he the great exception? People get torpedoed around here for not using a Priest's title as an author when his title is not included in the attribution within the text itself.

I've asked this question about Fr. Seraphim of Platina more than five with not an answer here, why he is referred to by his last name. A practice I understand is improper when referring to a monastic within Orthodoxy. Why not call him by his first name before his tonsuring as well?
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« Reply #26 on: April 05, 2011, 04:33:32 PM »

I've asked this question about Fr. Seraphim of Platina more than five with not an answer here, why he is referred to by his last name. A practice I understand is improper when referring to a monastic within Orthodoxy. Why not call him by his first name before his tonsuring as well?

Because Eugene isn't a name that I really like. Now regarding others, say Met. Kallistos... hey, I have no problems with Timothy.  Tongue Fr. Seraphim isn't the only one that we do this with, there are others such as St. Ignatius Brianchnaninov. Having said that, I agree with your point about there being some inconsistency. One user also has a saint mentioned under his username, and doesn't have "St." there. Anathema! Warn him! If he doesn't change it, post moderation!  police
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« Reply #27 on: April 05, 2011, 05:33:34 PM »

I've asked this question about Fr. Seraphim of Platina more than five with not an answer here, why he is referred to by his last name. A practice I understand is improper when referring to a monastic within Orthodoxy. Why not call him by his first name before his tonsuring as well?

Because Eugene isn't a name that I really like. Now regarding others, say Met. Kallistos... hey, I have no problems with Timothy.  Tongue Fr. Seraphim isn't the only one that we do this with, there are others such as St. Ignatius Brianchnaninov. Having said that, I agree with your point about there being some inconsistency. One user also has a saint mentioned under his username, and doesn't have "St." there. Anathema! Warn him! If he doesn't change it, post moderation!  police

Does being raised to Episcopacy alter how one addresses a monastic?

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« Reply #28 on: April 05, 2011, 06:31:52 PM »

St. Justin Popovich, St. Nikolai Velimirovich, etc
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« Reply #29 on: April 05, 2011, 09:22:39 PM »

Hey Orthonerds,
At least refer to the man properly:
Fr. Seraphim of Platina
EDIT: There goes my transcription job . . . .
I do not believe there is anything "improper" with calling him "Fr. Seraphim Rose." That is how he is known by convention, and how he is often described by the fathers of St. Herman's, near Platina. It's sort of like insisting that bishops' names be written in all capital letters, with or without a + before them. It's a bit ridiculous.

Right.  If one wants to follow strictest protocol, last name would go in parenthases ex: Fr. Seraphim (Rose).  However, to insist on it I think is a bit overboard. 
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« Reply #30 on: April 06, 2011, 01:42:30 AM »

ativan, I don't think you realize that using logic and rational thinking to analyze scripture is something almost every Church Father did. I would argue that this isn't what the Protestants do (especially in regard to Revelation).
But I don't think you even realize that he/she who has not "seen" the whole scripture by their own spiritual eye revealed to them by the Lord himself can't be any sort of saint. I would argue that Protestants use logic and rational to approach to the Bible. You can ask a Protestant and he'll tell you. Why do you think Protestant-NonProtestant discussions last forever each one bringing quotes from scripture?

Quote
Also, please answer this question... Why is it that none of these views (world-gov't, world-currency, id card=666, etc...) exist within Orthodoxy until after the 1800s?
Because they were talking to people of their own century who did not know what id card or world currency was. Or I might be wrong. In the end this question is not vital to me at all.

Quote
I have to say that is a bit wrong. We absolutely have to use discernment, even with Saints.
Why? Because we have prayed and fasted more? Because we had revelations from the Lord?

Quote
Again, you ignore my point about St. Augustine. St. Augustine is just as much worthy of being a Saint as any other Saint. But wouldn't you agree that he was wrong on many levels?
Who am I to disagree with any Real Saint? Even if it seems Great Saints "disagree" each other, that means nothing since Sainthood is totally different domain and I will not understand them. I can take as much as it is good for my soul and even then hoping I'm doing the right thing.

Quote
You cannot put 100% faith in a human being, or you will be led astray. (of course, unless that human being is Christ)
Yes, I can't even put 1% faith in man. All faith we put we put in God. But saints are "God who's on duty" (this is the wards of whom I think is Great Saint - it is not my words)

Quote
The Church Fathers contradict each other at times... What do you do with that?
I answered that above. Theology is not my domain. I read very little on theology and that because to remind myself how endless and diverse opinions can be.


Quote
They all cannot be right, some have to be wrong and others have to be right. Does this mean that the ones that are wrong aren't Saintly? I really hope you don't say they aren't.
Why not? What you just did was applied human logic (which is none but a artificial game) to spiritual dimension. One is of this world and another one heavenly world. I know one thing for example. When 100 people listen to a great saints sermon, saint can say 2-3 sentence and everybody gets answers to their most dear questions. How can you explain this by using human logic? I think one should read first of all Saints' lives. One can learn much more by doing this than reading theological treatises.

Quote
A Saint can be wrong, and there is nothing wrong with that.
No, they can't be wrong when they give us advise. Saints are here on this earth to cure and save our souls. Nobody can do this unless they see our souls directly not just by reading books. And this is accomplished only through the Lord Jesus Christ. When Saints help us it is The Lord Himself helping us. Jesus Christ can't be wrong.
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« Reply #31 on: April 06, 2011, 09:06:16 AM »

No, they can't be wrong when they give us advise. Saints are here on this earth to cure and save our souls. Nobody can do this unless they see our souls directly not just by reading books. And this is accomplished only through the Lord Jesus Christ. When Saints help us it is The Lord Himself helping us. Jesus Christ can't be wrong.

I think this is carrying the logic a bit too far. We start from the accepted premise that saints are those of us who have grown so close to the Lord, as we are called to do, that they deserve to be venerated, emulated and asked for their intercession. We can also say that the saints' intercessions result in the Lord helping us. To say, however, that every word that they have uttered is the Lord's is just too much a leap in logic if not in theology.
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« Reply #32 on: April 06, 2011, 11:41:18 AM »

No, they can't be wrong when they give us advise. Saints are here on this earth to cure and save our souls. Nobody can do this unless they see our souls directly not just by reading books. And this is accomplished only through the Lord Jesus Christ. When Saints help us it is The Lord Himself helping us. Jesus Christ can't be wrong.

I think this is carrying the logic a bit too far. We start from the accepted premise that saints are those of us who have grown so close to the Lord, as we are called to do, that they deserve to be venerated, emulated and asked for their intercession. We can also say that the saints' intercessions result in the Lord helping us. To say, however, that every word that they have uttered is the Lord's is just too much a leap in logic if not in theology.

I am unaware of any Orthodox dogma that pronounces all sayings and writings attributed to recognized Saints of the Church to be infallible. To make such an argument is dangerous at best.
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« Reply #33 on: April 07, 2011, 11:16:12 PM »

No, they can't be wrong when they give us advise. Saints are here on this earth to cure and save our souls. Nobody can do this unless they see our souls directly not just by reading books. And this is accomplished only through the Lord Jesus Christ. When Saints help us it is The Lord Himself helping us. Jesus Christ can't be wrong.
I think this is carrying the logic a bit too far. We start from the accepted premise that saints are those of us who have grown so close to the Lord, as we are called to do, that they deserve to be venerated, emulated and asked for their intercession. We can also say that the saints' intercessions result in the Lord helping us. To say, however, that every word that they have uttered is the Lord's is just too much a leap in logic if not in theology.
I am unaware of any Orthodox dogma that pronounces all sayings and writings attributed to recognized Saints of the Church to be infallible. To make such an argument is dangerous at best.
  Correct. The Saints themselves are bound by the "consensus patrem."   What we are to adhere to is the consensus of the Fathers, not where they might have expressed their own theologoumena or opinions.   As the Synodikon of Orthodoxy repeatedly says, what we confess, we are to "confess, in accord with the divinely-inspired theologies of the saints and the Godly mind of the Church."   Their thoughts that are not of the phronema (mind) of the Church are to be considered adiaphorus, or "doubtful matters" as St. Paul says. 
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« Reply #34 on: April 08, 2011, 01:46:31 AM »

This is my faith and it's simple: 1) If a Saint is just a man like me and only behaves morally seen as an outside manifestation of his/her actions/words he/she is no different than I. 2) If a Saint is a vessel for The Holy Spirit and The Lord Jesus Christ then I can't imagine they can be wrong.

From here it is clear that it is definitional issue for me. I don't think all canonized saints are Saints in the sense of #2 above. On the other hand not all Saints are visible to us. Some Saints walk among us and we don't see them. In fact, more Saintly they are (Saints differ in their Sainthood) the less Saintly they seem to us and many times lots of Orthodox people will flat out deny sainthood of such Saint. This is especially true for Salos Saints (Fools for the Christ). I can bring several examples of the past and present on this.

Thus once I feel a man/woman is saint saying he/she is wrong is same for me to say God is wrong. I'm not saying anybody this is truth. No, I just say this is my faith in which I have no doubt. That is why I have faith in everything they see, including issues on Apocalypse. Though I myself say also scriptural support for signs of Second Coming being close such as world government, world currency etc not to mention that these are facts - We see globalization in front of us; We see secularization of religion in front of us; We see intentions of people to transform God oriented Faith into human oriented "faith" and so on. Maybe I see it distorted and these things not happening, it's just my imagination. But imagination or not, they are mine and I can't get rid of them even if I take medicines Smiley

Finally I do hope someone will pick this up (that a Saint is "God on duty") and start looking for a Saint.

P.S. What I've said about Saints is in no way my logical deduction in case somebody thinks this seems right. I just repeat those Great Man who I believe are Real Saints.
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« Reply #35 on: April 16, 2011, 09:29:44 PM »

I thank God that he freed me of the need for such certitudes Smiley
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« Reply #36 on: April 18, 2011, 03:31:06 PM »

has Protestant Eschatology and modernized interpretations of scriptures crept into Orthodox circles?

IMO, yes!

I didn't used to think this until I started reading what you're talking about, not to mention a book published by Light and Life some years ago by someone named Engle or Engel (I can't recall, the cover had a drawing of Lucifer on it) where the book followed my formerly held Protestant Apocalyptic beliefs pretty much story line by story line, the only difference was that the Russians were the "good guys" instead of the "bad guys" as in Evangelicalism.



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« Reply #37 on: April 18, 2011, 03:33:39 PM »

are you sure one-world gov't isnt there in Orthodoxy before 1800?

It was, it was called the Byzantine Empire! Smiley
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« Reply #38 on: April 18, 2011, 03:46:59 PM »


Who am I to disagree with any Real Saint? Even if it seems Great Saints "disagree" each other, that means nothing since Sainthood is totally different domain and I will not understand them. I can take as much as it is good for my soul and even then hoping I'm doing the right thing.

You have a right to disagree with anyone, even saints. The idea that saints are "practically perfect in every way" like  Mary Poppins a bizarre, escoteric and blatantly Western understanding of sainthood. What makes  a saint a saint in the eyes of the Orthodox Church is that they struggled; struggled with their weaknesses, their sins, their mistakes and no, they NEVER became perfect. No saint was ever perfect and thus ALL saints have and will continue to make mistakes and errors. St. Jerome once teetered on the belief that only monastics could be saved. He eventually softened his view (at the urging of his friend St. Ambrose) to accept married people could be saved but married folks wouldn't be as "close to God" in heaven as monastics. Do you believe that? St. Iraeneus said Jesus was 49 years old when He was crucified, do you believe that? St. Gregory of Nyssa believed in universal salvation, do you? He also believed infants who died were definitely in heaven, while St. Augustine said they definitely were NOT in heaven. You cannot just say, "oh the saints are so much closer to God and I cannot hope to figure this out" and expect to be taken seriously. Sainthood is NOT a "totally different domain", wherever did you learn such things?


Quote
Yes, I can't even put 1% faith in man. All faith we put we put in God. But saints are "God who's on duty" (this is the wards of whom I think is Great Saint - it is not my words)

Sounds a little to close to a belief that saints are "avatars" rather than anything Orthodox Christianity to me.

Quote
Quote
They all cannot be right, some have to be wrong and others have to be right. Does this mean that the ones that are wrong aren't Saintly? I really hope you don't say they aren't.
Why not? What you just did was applied human logic (which is none but a artificial game) to spiritual dimension. One is of this world and another one heavenly world.

Sounds a bit like gnosticism where you're dividing up the "spiritual" world from the "material" world, and only those who understand the spiritual dimension get the real truth.



Quote
A Saint can be wrong, and there is nothing wrong with that.
No, they can't be wrong when they give us advise. Saints are here on this earth to cure and save our souls. [/quote]

Funny, I thought the healing and curing of our souls was the job of Jesus Christ within the Sacraments and OUR prayer lives? Didn't know it was the saints that did this.

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« Reply #39 on: April 18, 2011, 04:22:29 PM »

This is my faith and it's simple: 1) If a Saint is just a man like me and only behaves morally seen as an outside manifestation of his/her actions/words he/she is no different than I. 2) If a Saint is a vessel for The Holy Spirit and The Lord Jesus Christ then I can't imagine they can be wrong.

From here it is clear that it is definitional issue for me. I don't think all canonized saints are Saints in the sense of #2 above. On the other hand not all Saints are visible to us. Some Saints walk among us and we don't see them. In fact, more Saintly they are (Saints differ in their Sainthood) the less Saintly they seem to us and many times lots of Orthodox people will flat out deny sainthood of such Saint. This is especially true for Salos Saints (Fools for the Christ). I can bring several examples of the past and present on this.

Thus once I feel a man/woman is saint saying he/she is wrong is same for me to say God is wrong. I'm not saying anybody this is truth. No, I just say this is my faith in which I have no doubt. That is why I have faith in everything they see, including issues on Apocalypse. Though I myself say also scriptural support for signs of Second Coming being close such as world government, world currency etc not to mention that these are facts - We see globalization in front of us; We see secularization of religion in front of us; We see intentions of people to transform God oriented Faith into human oriented "faith" and so on. Maybe I see it distorted and these things not happening, it's just my imagination. But imagination or not, they are mine and I can't get rid of them even if I take medicines Smiley

Finally I do hope someone will pick this up (that a Saint is "God on duty") and start looking for a Saint.

P.S. What I've said about Saints is in no way my logical deduction in case somebody thinks this seems right. I just repeat those Great Man who I believe are Real Saints.
St. Luke deemed the Bereans worthy of praise because they searched the Scriptures to verify that what St. Paul was teaching them was true. And yet, we are not to examine the teachings of the saints in the same way? BALDERDASH! Angry
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« Reply #40 on: April 20, 2011, 04:44:42 PM »

Is Protestant Eschatology Creeping into Orthodoxy?

Unfortunately I think it is.  A large part of the problem is that so many converts are coming into the Church, especially from Protestant backrounds, Evangelicals who have little, if any real understanding of sacramental Christianity or Church history.  They try to delude, if not change the development of Eastern ecclesiology to fit their own ideas of what Orthodoxy should be (Which is usually as far away from Roman Catholicism as they can get).

I see this all the time, especially when I hear OC's who tell me that the Church does not believe in the 7 sacraments, or the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist, or even the powers of the priest to forgive confessed sins.  I understand that, traditionally the East has not had as defined a view on such things as has the Latin West, but it would be a huge error to say that Orthodoxy does not believe in these things, let alone reject them outright.
 
Its understandable that Protestant converts may be swayed by the mystical side of Orthodoxy (Especially in the writings of some mystic monks and hermits of past ages), but they should not be so willing to disregard all legal definitions (Much of which is necessary simply to articulate truth to common people in such a way as they could understand it).
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« Reply #41 on: April 21, 2011, 02:50:12 PM »

St. Luke deemed the Bereans worthy of praise because they searched the Scriptures to verify that what St. Paul was teaching them was true. And yet, we are not to examine the teachings of the saints in the same way? BALDERDASH! Angry

Here, Here!!!  <applause!>
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« Reply #42 on: April 21, 2011, 02:53:22 PM »

Thus once I feel a man/woman is saint

Once you "feel" this?  You're making bald assertions that something is true because of the way you feel?  That is subjective to you personally.  Why would your feelings be necessarily true and therefor have to be accepted without question by other people? 
 Huh

Ebor
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"I wish they would remember that the charge to Peter was "Feed my sheep", not "Try experiments on my rats", or even "Teach my performing dogs new tricks". - C. S. Lewis

The Katana of Reasoned Discussion

For some a world view is more like a neighborhood watch.
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