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Author Topic: Could these scriptures apply also to a EO Bishop?  (Read 2114 times) Average Rating: 0
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yeshuaisiam
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« on: February 25, 2012, 01:01:39 AM »

Matthew 23

 1Then spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples,
 2Saying The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat:

Here you can see the bishop on a throne, holding the serpent staff of Moses.

 3All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not.
Do you & the church do most everything the Bishop tells you to do?

4For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers.
I've known of several bishops that priests have thought of as tyrants, who do nothing.   Have you?

5But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments,


 6And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,


 7And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi.

 
8But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren.
9And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.
10Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t__46_yVnhs
Go to 0:30 in the video

11But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant.
When has a bishop become your servant?

12And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.
13But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.

14Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.
There are many services from EO bishops that stretch for many hours.  Do you see more tithes helping widows and orphans (as the scriptures tell us to), or do build onto the church?

 15Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.

 16Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, Whosoever shall swear by the temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he is a debtor!
The Lord commanded us not to swear, but upon Ordination of a Bishop the Bishop swears vows (referencing the Orthodox Christian Service book by Isabel Hapgood page 328 of the Bishops ordination).  During this process he also makes several promises and his answers are not a simple "Yes be Yes, and No be No".

17Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifieth the gold?
Yep, here we have the good old OCA payoff by the WCC in the 1980's.  Of course the issues that the bishop promises not to hold services in other churches doesn't apply to ecumenism does it?  (found in the same book during the Bishop's ordination he promises not to do this, but absolutely does it anyway under ecumenism which bring WCC payoffs).

It's a wonder our Lord and savior spoke the word "hypocrites" several times in this chapter when referencing the pharisees, or the leading authorities of the church.  (We call the EO leaders Bishops).

Does anybody else see the similarity?

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« Reply #1 on: February 25, 2012, 01:13:07 AM »

Why are you on an Orthodox Christian forum attempting to bring people into destruction with you?
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« Reply #2 on: February 25, 2012, 01:19:18 AM »

Why are you on an Orthodox Christian forum attempting to bring people into destruction with you?

You know, the Catholics ask the same things to the Orthodox Christians on the Catholic Answers forum Tongue

In all seriousness, the more attention this person gets, the more this person will post. Just ignore it.
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« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2012, 01:45:49 AM »

Why is everybody ignoring her and acting like she is being so bad? She actually asked a good question which I have been wondering very much too. St. John Chrysostom wrote a homily about this and actually did say that this applies to the clergy of the Church as well. That, even if they are bad people and are hypocrites, we should still obey what they teach us in terms of our moral dispensation with God because it does not come from them but from above.
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« Reply #4 on: February 25, 2012, 01:49:26 AM »

Why is everybody ignoring her and acting like she is being so bad? She actually asked a good question which I have been wondering very much too. St. John Chrysostom wrote a homily about this and actually did say that this applies to the clergy of the Church as well. That, even if they are bad people and are hypocrites, we should still obey what they teach us in terms of our moral dispensation with God because it does not come from them but from above.

I'm not sure what HH Kirill has done to deserve being called a Pharisee.
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« Reply #5 on: February 25, 2012, 01:53:00 AM »

Why is everybody ignoring her and acting like she is being so bad? She actually asked a good question which I have been wondering very much too. St. John Chrysostom wrote a homily about this and actually did say that this applies to the clergy of the Church as well. That, even if they are bad people and are hypocrites, we should still obey what they teach us in terms of our moral dispensation with God because it does not come from them but from above.

I'm not sure what HH Alexey has done to deserve being called a Pharisee.

I do not even know who he is. I was just answering the question in general.
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« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2012, 02:01:57 AM »

Why are you on an Orthodox Christian forum attempting to bring people into destruction with you?

Good question, but you misunderstand & the destruction part is a bit loaded as most of the arguments I present are backed in scripture, often quotes from God.

I seek answers, and if only met in hatred, ridicule, an insults (which have been many of the responses) it only validates to me that indeed my choice of leaving the EO church is valid.  As Christians, we should be able to engage in dialog that is not condescending and disrespectful, but rather in love, we should be able to engage in dialog and truth.  Answers met with anger is frustration, dissonance, and/or outrage/insult because "how dare you".

It's been a long journey, as EO was instilled in me since birth.

I view the EO church as hijacked, where the historical roots are real and many of the teachings are real, but through the years it has become something that has strayed (way beyond evolving) from the original church.  I believe in 90% of what EO is.  

But anyway, this is the free for all section under religious topics.   From what I read it is Hot/Controversial/debate-intended topics.  I'm not intending to take anybody from the church, in fact I have tried to be helpful to those in the church on other sections.   But these are real issues I have with the EO church.

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« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2012, 02:06:16 AM »

Why is everybody ignoring her and acting like she is being so bad? She actually asked a good question which I have been wondering very much too. St. John Chrysostom wrote a homily about this and actually did say that this applies to the clergy of the Church as well. That, even if they are bad people and are hypocrites, we should still obey what they teach us in terms of our moral dispensation with God because it does not come from them but from above.

Hi brother, just a teeny correction (sorry if my avatar misleads - but just thought the avatar was nice).

I'm actually a male.  Married with 5 children.  

If you have any reference to the homily, I'd be interested in reading what St. John Chrysostom wrote about the topic.  Perhaps I could gain some more insight or answers from that.  (or of course if anybody else knows of the homily feel free to reference)
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« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2012, 02:08:26 AM »

While it is certainly true that some bishops may have abused powers, I would think it unfair to lump all bishops into that same category. Most bishops I've met are very humble men who don't even want to be bishops but it has come upon them and so they bear their cross. From what I've read, the things they did were not what was wrong, per se. And by that I mean, the sitting in Moses' seat or having the place of honor, but their attitude and spiritual state. What Christ was condemning was not the practices, but the spiritual state of the Pharisees. They had gotten to a point where they cared more about the privileges than the responsibilities.

But, just because some bishops may abuse power or get an inflated ego does not mean that the things that are shown to them is bad. The bishops have been entrusted with responsibility over the flock. Christ was trying to point out that loving the privileges more than the responsibility was missing the point. I remember being told that the Law was more focused on outward things. Christ was trying to show that the spiritual state was more important. It didn't mean that sitting in a place of honor was bad, only that if you loved it more than God, it was bad. If you loved it more than spirituality, it was bad.

If my bishop tells me to do something, I will. It's my job. Being obedient. Now, if he told me to do something that was against the Church (such as to say that Christ was not God), then there's a problem and the history of the Church has shown that people do revolt against heretical bishops. But, to say "I'm not going to do that because he doesn't have a right to tell me how to live my life" is arrogant.

But, the point is Christ is not condemning the practices just the idea of the practices becoming more important and while there have surely been bishops who have gone that way, that doesn't mean the system is wrong. Bishops are human, too. They will fall just as we all do.  
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« Reply #9 on: February 25, 2012, 02:18:53 AM »

While it is certainly true that some bishops may have abused powers, I would think it unfair to lump all bishops into that same category. Most bishops I've met are very humble men who don't even want to be bishops but it has come upon them and so they bear their cross. From what I've read, the things they did were not what was wrong, per se. And by that I mean, the sitting in Moses' seat or having the place of honor, but their attitude and spiritual state. What Christ was condemning was not the practices, but the spiritual state of the Pharisees. They had gotten to a point where they cared more about the privileges than the responsibilities.

But, just because some bishops may abuse power or get an inflated ego does not mean that the things that are shown to them is bad. The bishops have been entrusted with responsibility over the flock. Christ was trying to point out that loving the privileges more than the responsibility was missing the point. I remember being told that the Law was more focused on outward things. Christ was trying to show that the spiritual state was more important. It didn't mean that sitting in a place of honor was bad, only that if you loved it more than God, it was bad. If you loved it more than spirituality, it was bad.

If my bishop tells me to do something, I will. It's my job. Being obedient. Now, if he told me to do something that was against the Church (such as to say that Christ was not God), then there's a problem and the history of the Church has shown that people do revolt against heretical bishops. But, to say "I'm not going to do that because he doesn't have a right to tell me how to live my life" is arrogant.

But, the point is Christ is not condemning the practices just the idea of the practices becoming more important and while there have surely been bishops who have gone that way, that doesn't mean the system is wrong. Bishops are human, too. They will fall just as we all do.  

I agree that there are some bishops who never wanted to be.  For instance,  in the biography of St. Tikhon of Zadonsk, he really didn't want it and liked being a monk.
  
What do you think about Christ's teachings that we are all to be equal, and that nobody is above anybody else?  
Do you think there should be a place of  honor amongst fellow Christians or "the high seat"?

Of course in your last statement, I agree that Bishops are human, and do have sins as well.  I certainly don't expect any of them to be absolutely perfect or anything.  

My issues deal within the context of the scriptures, and how as our Lord and Savior scolded the pharisees who were the religious leaders of the day, that many of the EO bishops (AND NO it is not EO exclusive), seem to fall into the same issues the pharisees did.
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« Reply #10 on: February 25, 2012, 02:26:54 AM »

6And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,


That's not an EO bishop.

And he is sitting under a tree, not an uppermost room or synagogue.
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« Reply #11 on: February 25, 2012, 02:28:01 AM »

6And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,


That's not an EO bishop.

And he is sitting under a tree, not an uppermost room or synagogue.

Is he a Copt?
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« Reply #12 on: February 25, 2012, 02:34:48 AM »

I agree that there are some bishops who never wanted to be.  For instance,  in the biography of St. Tikhon of Zadonsk, he really didn't want it and liked being a monk.
  
What do you think about Christ's teachings that we are all to be equal, and that nobody is above anybody else?  
Do you think there should be a place of  honor amongst fellow Christians or "the high seat"?

Of course in your last statement, I agree that Bishops are human, and do have sins as well.  I certainly don't expect any of them to be absolutely perfect or anything.  

My issues deal within the context of the scriptures, and how as our Lord and Savior scolded the pharisees who were the religious leaders of the day, that many of the EO bishops (AND NO it is not EO exclusive), seem to fall into the same issues the pharisees did.

I think we are equal, and we're not. Remember that Christ also said to whom much is given, much will be required. The bishops are entrusted in looking over the flock, teaching the flock and guiding them towards God. That is a lot of responsibility and they have to account for that to God. I have no problem giving a place of honor to bishops. I will gladly do it. In the same way I would give the place of honor to my dad, I would give it to the bishop.

As for making the broad declaration that "many" bishops seem to have become like the pharisees requires some sort of proof. Do you know for sure that they have? To answer that question, one would most likely have to know the heart of the bishop unless he told you straight out. As I said, the entire system is not broken because some bishops enjoy the honor. It does not mean that we now strip all of that away.
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« Reply #13 on: February 25, 2012, 02:35:32 AM »

6And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,


That's not an EO bishop.

And he is sitting under a tree, not an uppermost room or synagogue.

Is he a Copt?

It looks like Ethiopian.
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« Reply #14 on: February 25, 2012, 02:39:32 AM »

6And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,


That's not an EO bishop.

And he is sitting under a tree, not an uppermost room or synagogue.

Is he a Copt?

Their headgear, especially the black turban looking things (any of our resident Copts want to tell me what those are named? Smiley), looks Coptic.
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« Reply #15 on: February 25, 2012, 02:59:00 AM »

I think he is Abune Paulos of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abune_Paulos
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« Reply #16 on: February 25, 2012, 03:00:44 AM »

I believe it is the Coptic Pope.
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« Reply #17 on: February 25, 2012, 03:02:59 AM »

You can ignore my last post, Salpy is right.
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« Reply #18 on: February 25, 2012, 03:23:03 AM »

Matthew 23

 1Then spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples,
 2Saying The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat:

Here you can see the bishop on a throne, holding the serpent staff of Moses.
Wrong verse from Matthew.  What you are looking for is 10:16 "Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be wise as serpents." They represent a bishop's duty to defend his flock-hence why they are on the shepherd's staff-and often appear dragon like to underscore the protection of those whom Christ has sent.

The appropriate serpent staff reference to Moses would be John 3:14.  You Protestants are usually fond of that verse.

As to the bishops throne, Luke 22:29-30 "just as My Father has granted Me a kingdom, I grant you that you may eat and drink at My table in My kingdom, and you will sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel."  Christ's throne, not Moses seat, which is occupied, as your verse indicate, by your friends the rabbis."

3All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not.
Do you & the church do most everything the Bishop tells you to do?
"So then, brothers, stand firm and hold to the traditions we passed on to you, whether by word of mouth or by letter."  II Thess. 2:15 "Since a bishop is entrusted with God's work, he must...hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught, so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it." Titus 1:7-9  You have any such bishops to to tell you what to do with Apostolic authority to conform to Christ?

4For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers.
I've known of several bishops that priests have thought of as tyrants, who do nothing.   Have you?
Sure, sometimes unjustly.  I've also know several bishops who were true fathers to the Faithful and shepherds of the flock, successors to the Apostles and stewards of Christ.  Have you?  If yes, why are you so fixated on those who fail in their duties?

5But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments,
You'll notice-no, of course you won't notice-that they are vested in celebrating the Divine Services, IOW robed with the authority to act in the name of the Church of Christ.  On the street they look like this:

that's the Patriarch of All Serbia, Pavle of blessed memory.

6And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,
I can see how you, all comfortable down in the safety of Texas, can't appreciate the inspiration such appearances bring in the Middle East, where Christians are killed daily.
 
8But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren.
9And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.
10Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t__46_yVnhs
Go to 0:30 in the video
Really? A funeral?  You really don't know any depths.

So, you didn't call the man who sired and/or raised you "father"?  How do you reconcile that to the Fifth Commandment?

"For though you have ten thousand  tutors in Christ, yet have you not many fathers: for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the Gospel" I Cor. 4:15

Btw, the word in the service is "δεσπότης" "master," the same word St. Peter uses when he exhorts the Christians "be subject to your masters with all fear; not only to the good and gentle, but also to the harsh." I Peter 2:18.  The word in your verse is "καθηγητὴς" "leader."

11But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant.
When has a bishop become your servant?
At his consecration, if not before.

12And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.
13But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.
Someone has already told you "Physician, heal thyself:
Why are you on an Orthodox Christian forum attempting to bring people into destruction with you?

14Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.
There are many services from EO bishops that stretch for many hours.  Do you see more tithes helping widows and orphans (as the scriptures tell us to), or do build onto the church?
The Gospel tells us Christ prayed at times all night.  Was He making a pretence?

Matthew 25:1“Then the kingdom of heaven will be comparable to ten virgins, who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. 2“Five of them were foolish, and five were prudent. 3“For when the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them, 4but the prudent took oil in flasks along with their lamps. 5“Now while the bridegroom was delaying, they all got drowsy and began to sleep. 6“But at midnight there was a shout, ‘Behold, the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.’ 7“Then all those virgins rose and trimmed their lamps. 8“The foolish said to the prudent, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ 9“But the prudent answered, ‘No, there will not be enough for us and you too; go instead to the dealers and buy some for yourselves.’ 10“And while they were going away to make the purchase, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding feast; and the door was shut. 11“Later the other virgins also came, saying, ‘Lord, lord, open up for us.’ 12“But he answered, ‘Truly I say to you, I do not know you.’ 13“Be on the alert then...26:36Then Jesus came with them to a place called Gethsemane, and said to His disciples, “Sit here while I go over there and pray.” 37And He took with Him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be grieved and distressed. 38Then He said to them, “My soul is deeply grieved, to the point of death; remain here and keep watch with Me.”...39And He went a little beyond them, and fell on His face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; yet not as I will, but as You will.” 40And He came to the disciples and found them sleeping, and said to Peter, “So, you men could not keep watch with Me for one hour? 41“Keep watching and praying that you may not enter into temptation; the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”  42He went away again a second time and prayed, saying, “My Father, if this cannot pass away unless I drink it, Your will be done.” 43Again He came and found them sleeping, for their eyes were heavy. 44And He left them again, and went away and prayed a third time, saying the same thing once more. 45Then He came to the disciples and said to them, “Are you still sleeping and resting?"

In the Gospel we see Christ praying a lot and building the Church.  I don't recall off hand seeing Him devoting Himself to collecting tithes for widows and orphans.

" Acts6:1Now at this time while the disciples were increasing in number, a complaint arose on the part of the Hellenistic Jews against the native Hebrews, because their widows were being overlooked in the daily serving of food. 2So the twelve summoned the congregation of the disciples and said, “It is not desirable for us to neglect the word of God in order to serve tables."  I guess the Apostles committed your Great Apostacy in their Acts.

15Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.
Like we pointed out above, Physician, heal thyself.
Why are you on an Orthodox Christian forum attempting to bring people into destruction with you?
I guess these scriptures could apply also to you.

16Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, Whosoever shall swear by the temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he is a debtor!
The Lord commanded us not to swear, but upon Ordination of a Bishop the Bishop swears vows (referencing the Orthodox Christian Service book by Isabel Hapgood page 328 of the Bishops ordination).  During this process he also makes several promises and his answers are not a simple "Yes be Yes, and No be No".
"And the things [plural, you would have to know the original Greek to appreciate the import] you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable men who will also be qualified to teach others."  So the Apostle St. Paul told St. (II) Timothy (2:2) whom he had consecrated as bishop.  The vows and promises the bishop makes at consecration eliminates a weak link in the chain.  Since you are missing any link to the Apostles, I can see how you miss that.

17Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifieth the gold?
Yep, here we have the good old OCA payoff by the WCC in the 1980's.  Of course the issues that the bishop promises not to hold services in other churches doesn't apply to ecumenism does it?  (found in the same book during the Bishop's ordination he promises not to do this, but absolutely does it anyway under ecumenism which bring WCC payoffs).
you would have to have a point in there somewhere for us to address it.

It's a wonder our Lord and savior spoke the word "hypocrites" several times in this chapter when referencing the pharisees, or the leading authorities of the church.  (We call the EO leaders Bishops).
Who's "we"?  

We call them bishops because that is what the Apostles named them.

I have to defer to you expertise on hypocrisy.

Does anybody else see the similarity?
Sure. They has never been a shortage on those would take cheap shots at Christ's Church.
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« Reply #19 on: February 25, 2012, 04:01:39 AM »

^ Thank you, Isa, for that.

As he criticizes EO bishops, our friend needs to be reminded that in certain parts of the world, being a Christian bishop means being a target for martyrdom:

Quote
Victims of horrible torture, many Orthodox clergy were martyred for their faith.  Among the first was Metropolitan Chrysostomos who was martyred, not just to kill a man but, to insult a sacred religion and an ancient and honorable people.  Chrysostomos was enthroned as Metropolitan of Smyrna on 10 May 1910.  Metropolitan Chrysostomos courageously opposed the anti Christian rage of the turks and sought to raise international pressure against the persecution of Turkish Christians.  He wrote many letters to European leaders and to the western press in an effort to expose the genocide policies of the Turks.  In 1922, in unprotected Smyrna, Chrysostomos said to those begging him to flee:  "It is the tradition of the Greek Church and the duty of the priest to stay with his congregation."

On 9 September crowds were rushing into the cathedral for shelter when Chrysostomos, pale from fasting and lack of sleep, led his last prayer.  The Divine Liturgy ended as Turkish police came to the church and led Chrysostomos away.  The Turkish General Nouredin Pasha, known as the "butcher of Ionia", first spat on the Metropolitan and informed him that a tribunal in Angora (now Ankara) had already condemned him to death.  A mob fell upon Chrysostomos and tore out his eyes.  Bleeding profusely, he was dragged through the streets by his beard.  He was beaten and kicked and parts of his body were cut off.  All the while Chrysostomos, his face covered with blood, prayed: "Holy Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing."  Every now and then, when he had the strength, he would raise his hand and bless his persecutors; a Turk, realizing what the Metropolitan was doing, cut off his hand with a sword.  Metropolitan Chrysostomos was then hacked to pieced by the angry mob.

http://www.serfes.org/orthodox/memoryof.htm
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« Reply #20 on: February 25, 2012, 04:08:10 AM »

Why are you on an Orthodox Christian forum attempting to bring people into destruction with you?

Good question, but you misunderstand & the destruction part is a bit loaded as most of the arguments I present are backed in scripture, often quotes from God.
which "contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction."  II Peter 3:16.

I seek answers
No, you don't.   You have been given answers.  You haven't received the affirmation you crave.

and if only met in hatred, ridicule, an insults (which have been many of the responses) it only validates to me that indeed my choice of leaving the EO church is valid.  As Christians, we should be able to engage in dialog that is not condescending and disrespectful, but rather in love, we should be able to engage in dialog and truth.  Answers met with anger is frustration, dissonance, and/or outrage/insult because "how dare you".
You slander Orthodox bishops and the Orthodox episcopate founded by Christ, and demand respect for it.  The pearls of Orthodox Truth have been cast before you and you only trample them underfoot, treading them into this whine of yours.

We should be able to engage in dialog and truth, but you prevent that by demanding your own "facts."

If you really received your "validation" for apostacy, you would have been gone a long time ago.  Instead you come to preach your other gospel of Jesusiamity. Case in point: you "arguments" for insisting on "Yeshua" instead of "Jesus" have been shown to be UTTERLY unfounded, and yet you simply repeat them, demonstrating the wisdom of Churchill's words, that most people, when they stumble over the Truth, simply get up, dust themselves off, and go on as if nothing happened.

It's been a long journey
but its gate is wide and its way broad.

as EO was instilled in me since birth.

So you keep claiming, vague with no detail.

I view the EO church as hijacked, where the historical roots are real and many of the teachings are real, but through the years it has become something that has strayed (way beyond evolving) from the original church.
LOL. So far, there has been no evidence offered.  Assertions made, refuted, and then just repeated.

I believe in 90% of what EO is.
 
Your posts don't show agreement with 10% of what EO is.

But anyway, this is the free for all section under religious topics.   From what I read it is Hot/Controversial/debate-intended topics.  I'm not intending to take anybody from the church, in fact I have tried to be helpful to those in the church on other sections.   But these are real issues I have with the EO church.
and the evidence shows you are going to hold on to these grudges for dear life.
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« Reply #21 on: February 25, 2012, 04:10:11 AM »

Why are you on an Orthodox Christian forum attempting to bring people into destruction with you?

Good question, but you misunderstand & the destruction part is a bit loaded as most of the arguments I present are backed in scripture, often quotes from God.

I seek answers, and if only met in hatred, ridicule, an insults (which have been many of the responses) it only validates to me that indeed my choice of leaving the EO church is valid.  As Christians, we should be able to engage in dialog that is not condescending and disrespectful, but rather in love, we should be able to engage in dialog and truth.  Answers met with anger is frustration, dissonance, and/or outrage/insult because "how dare you".

It's been a long journey, as EO was instilled in me since birth.

I view the EO church as hijacked, where the historical roots are real and many of the teachings are real, but through the years it has become something that has strayed (way beyond evolving) from the original church.  I believe in 90% of what EO is. 

But anyway, this is the free for all section under religious topics.   From what I read it is Hot/Controversial/debate-intended topics.  I'm not intending to take anybody from the church, in fact I have tried to be helpful to those in the church on other sections.   But these are real issues I have with the EO church.



They are not backed by Scripture, they are back by your bad exegesis of Scripture.

Let's run through Matthew 23 line by line.

1 Then spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples,

No explanation needed

2 Saying, The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat:
3 All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not.

Here, the Lord is not criticizing those who hold authority, but criticizing those who hold authority, but are hypocrites and do not practice the law which they teach. He tells them, "All therefore whatsoever they bid you over, that observe and do," meaning that they should observe what the Pharisees say to do, but also he says, "do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not," pointing out their hypocrisy, showing that they do not practice the very law which they prescribe and interpret. Our bishops, whom you have unjustly defamed may be hypocrites (although you have produced scant evidence to substantiate your libel), in which our Lord's instructions are clear, we must follow the law and their interpretation of the law but not follow by their example of hypocrisy.

4 For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers.

Here the Lord is not criticizing the Pharisees for being "tyrants" or whatnot, but he criticizes them for their unwillingness to care for people pastorally. This may be true of some clergy in the Orthodox Church, but it certainly is not always the case.

5 But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments,

Here the criticisms of the Lord are very specific. He does not condemn the use of phylacteries and of garments, rather he condemns them making their phylacteries broad and enlarging the borders of their garments. This is because the only reason a Pharisee would make his phylacteries broad would be to make it more obvious to others that he is praying while in public. Liturgical vestments do not serve the same purpose, hence your criticism is unfounded.

6 And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,
7 And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi.
8 But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren.

Here, the Lord does not forbid people calling their teachers by the title Rabbi or whatnot, he condemns those who seek to be called as such. Similarly, he does not forbid or condemn those who are given the uppermost rooms at feasts or the chief seats in synagogues because it is an honor which they deserve, he condemns those who vaingloriously seek to be given such honors, or worse still, bestow such honors upon themselves. This is why he says in verse five, "but all their works they do for to be seen of men," because he is condemning self-serving acts of vanity among those in positions of authority, and condemning those who would arrogate authority upon themselves when rightfully they should have none.

9 And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.
10 Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ.

These verses (8-10) are often abused twisted out of context. It should be obvious to all but the most dense of people that Christ does not literally mean that none should be called father on earth, as children still call their fathers "father". What the Lord means is to say that none should call a man father, and ascribe to him the absolute authority which is ascribed to God the Father. Similarly, elsewhere in the Scriptures slaves are told to obey their masters. It is clear that the Lord is not abolishing the social structures of father and son, master and student, or master and slave; he is saying that none should arrogate the title of Master for themselves, and that none should invest in a man the authority reserved for God the Father. We do not call our priests father so as to give them authority like God the Father. We call them father to recognize their special role in our lives as guides and teachers, much as a father guides and teaches his own son.

Furthermore, Jesus' reasoning for two of these prohibitions, the ones found in verses 8 and 10, are that He Himself is their one teacher and leader. We see however, that in 1 Corinthians 12:28, Paul writes, "And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues." It should be clear then that after the ascension of the Christ into the heavens, others were ordained as teachers, and it is they who rightfully can be called masters because they are invested with the authority of our risen Lord. It is interesting to note that more modern translations of Matthew 23:10 more accurately translate the Greek word, 'καθηγηταί' as 'leaders' instead of 'master' as in the KJV. With this more accurate meaning of the verse in mind, let us bring to mind how clear it is from Acts and the Epistles that a system of leadership existed in the Church after Jesus' ascension. Either the Apostles were disobedient, or this prohibition was purely temporal.

11 But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant.

Your criticism that bishops are not our servants is unfounded. The bishops are servants of God and of the people. It should be clear by reading the lives of people like St. John of Shanghai and San Francisco just how much of a servant of the people one of the greatest among us was.

12 And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.
13 But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.
14 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.

Here the Lord does not condemn long prayer, as you have wrongly implied. He condemns long prayer for pretense. Similarly, he condemns not building churches at the expense of the poor (as if it were an either or choice), he condemns the Pharisees who would use their authority to defraud widows' families of their money by taking advantage of the widows' misfortune. If you feel that you are capable of judging the hearts of our clergy on either count, then you may go right on ahead with your madness.

15 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.

Again, if you think you can judge the hearts of our faithful and clergy, go right on ahead.

16 Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, Whosoever shall swear by the temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he is a debtor!

You obviously do not understand what the Lord means when he prohibits oaths. The prohibition is against making oaths without just cause (thus profaning God, the heavens or whatever one might swear by). Solemn oaths are not forbidden, as we can see that God at times swears by himself (Gen 22:16-17), that Jesus in Matthew 26:63 is asked under oath whether he is the Son of God, to which he does not protest that one ought not make oaths, and that Paul in Second Corinthians 1:23 swears by an oath as well.

17 Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifieth the gold?

What does this verse have to do with the OCA? Did the OCA start teaching that the gold is greater than the Church? Give me a break.
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« Reply #22 on: February 25, 2012, 04:10:48 AM »

From the same article above by Fr. Serfes, an example of what Armenian clergy, including bishops, suffered during the Genocide:

Quote
Among the hundreds of Armenian clergy who were persecuted and murdered were Bishop Khosrov Behrigian and Very Reverend Father Mgrdich' Chghladian.

Bishop Behrigian (1869-1915) was born in Zara and became the primate for the Diocese of Caesarea/Kayseri in 1915.  He was arrested by Turkish police upon his return from Etchmiadzin where he had just been consecrated bishop.  Informed of his fate, the bishop asked for a bullet to the head.  Deliberately ignoring his request, the police tied him to a "yataghan" where sheep were butchered an then proceeded to hack his body apart while he was still alive.

Father Chghladian was born in Tatvan.  In May 1915, as part of the campaign of mass arrests, deportations and murders, the priest was tortured and displayed in a procession, led by sheiks and dervishes while accompanied by drums, through the streets of Dikranagerd.  Once the procession returned to the mosque, in the presence of government officials, the sheiks poured oil over the priest and burned him alive.

People outside the Orthodox world do not know what the Eastern and Oriental Orthodox people--including and especially the clergy--have suffered in the past century under Communism and Islam.  And the persecution continues in places like Iraq and Egypt.  
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« Reply #23 on: February 25, 2012, 04:23:22 AM »

As Christians, we should be able to engage in dialog that is not condescending and disrespectful, but rather in love, we should be able to engage in dialog and truth.
And what do you know of love and truth? He who is love often had some very harsh things to say when speaking the truth to others. He who is truth often smacked others upside the head verbally, if not physically, and He did so out of love and a desire that they repent. Are we to engage you in what you call dialogue and truth as though your views are equal in value to ours when you would clearly follow after a Gospel other than that of Jesus Christ?
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« Reply #24 on: February 25, 2012, 05:10:37 AM »

yeshuaisiam,

Abuse of responsibility happens everywhere, including among the Amish and Mennonite groups. Being a hypocrite is a choice one makes. It has nothing to do with the clothes we wear or leadership role in the Church. And not every Pharisee or Jewish leader was bad. As seen in the Scripture below:

Luke 1:5-13
"In the days of Herod, king of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah, of the division of Abijah. And he had a wife from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and statutes of the Lord. But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and both were advanced in years.

Now while he was serving as priest before God when his division was on duty, according to the custom of the priesthood, he was chosen by lot to enter the temple of the Lord and burn incense. And the whole multitude of the people were praying outside at the hour of incense. And there appeared to him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. And Zechariah was troubled when he saw him, and fear fell upon him. But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zechariah, for your prayer has been heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John."



Now this shows that one can be high priest with all the fancy clothes that they wore and still not be a hypocrite, and so being a hypocrite has nothing to do with the actual clothes one wears or status in a religious group. No, instead it has everything to do with the inner and outer choices we make as individuals.  



 Also, I could be wrong about this, but as Christians the Apostles and Bishops after them sat on the seat(Authority) of Christ not the seat(Authority) of Moses. But if you are willing to grant the Orthodox Church Authority then why not obey it? Why be in defiance of it?


1.) You say that Orthodoxy is the original church and how later it got corrupted and not simply evolved. To believe that is to not believe in the very words of Christ. And so what you need to do is see if these issues are more complex beneath the surface for it's not as simple as you make it out to be. For even-though Jesus said don't call anyone Rabbi and Master, he still allowed people to call Him those things anyway. Also the Apostle Paul called himself a father, and he even mentions the Church having teachers. And so how strict do you want to interpret the words of Christ? If you want to be consistent in that super literal projectory then you must stop calling everyone father, mother, teacher, master.........etc.

Meaning, you can't call school teachers "teacher". You can't call your biological father "father". You can't call political leaders "Leader, teacher, fathers......". You can't call ethnic leaders like Martin Luther King Jr. a leader or a father of the civil rights movement of the 1960's......etc. And so how strict are you willing to go?

Obviously Jesus didn't mean it in that kind of way or else the Apostles would of refrained from using such words in regards to human beings.

But the point is, if you refuse to be super strict about this matter then you can't criticize the Orthodox Church for allowing it's spiritual leaders to be called such things. You would also have to criticize the Apostles Peter, John and Paul as well, for they too made use of such words in regards to people.

The Apostle Paul called himself a spiritual father, and how his church plant was to follow him as he followed Christ, and so it's about the source. Jesus was pointing to the Father as being the source. For He is the Father and it is through Him that we know what being a Father is like. And so we are fathers as we follow the Father! We are leaders as we follow Thee Leader!

And so it comes down to the source. Is the source from below(man, the earth) or from above(God, the Heavens). We are not to be fathers, teachers, leaders, masters in the way that is from below. Instead, we are to be fathers, teachers, leaders, masters....etc in the way that is from above!




2.) Taking an Oath is not bad in and of itself. You need to have discernment when it comes to this for I too use to be influenced back in my protestant days by a ministry that was against violence, taking oaths.....pretty much what Jehovia Witnesses, Seventh Day Adventists, and Mennonites advocate today. However, if you look at church history then you would know that Christians pretty much took an Oath when they became Baptized or Chrismated into the Church. And so Oaths aren't wrong in and of themselves. The issue is much deeper and complex than that.


3.) Christians being in the Army is not a bad thing in and of itself. Christians were in the Army from the first century on up. In fact, both positions of non-violence and pro army can be seen in the history of Christianity. These two views or positions co-existed within the Church for 2,000 years. In the book of Acts we see soldiers convert to Christianity! These soldiers never left the army after conversion, and so this tension co-existed within the Church for 2,000 years. Read these books for more info about the matter:

http://www.amazon.com/Pacifist-Option-Argument-Orthodox-Theology/dp/1573092444 (The Pacifist Option: The Moral Argument Against War in Eastern Orthodox Theology)




http://www.amazon.com/Virtue-War-Reclaiming-Christian-Traditions/dp/1928653170/ref=pd_sim_sbs_b_1 (Virtue Of War: Reclaiming the Classic Christian Traditions East and West)




I too use to have high convictions in the area of non-violence and the whole notion that Christians must be pacifists, but after looking at the issue in more detail in my Orthodox years I saw that what I came to believe in the past some many many years ago way back in my protestant years by way of a certain protestant online early church / anabaptist ministry was wrong. It was too simplistic and it didn't show all of the facts about the issue at hand. In order to be spiritually and intellectually honest I had to realize that the facts weren't all on one side.

And so now I see myself as a semi-pacifist. Why? Because now I know that both sides always co-existed with each other. Regardless if I like it or not!
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« Reply #25 on: February 25, 2012, 02:09:36 PM »

6And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,


That's not an EO bishop.

And he is sitting under a tree, not an uppermost room or synagogue.
Like the Apostle St. Nathanial.  John 1:48

So I guess the answer to Jesusiam is no, he cherry picked verse doesn't apply.
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« Reply #26 on: February 25, 2012, 03:41:46 PM »

Matthew 23

 1Then spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples,
 2Saying The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat:

Here you can see the bishop on a throne, holding the serpent staff of Moses.
Wrong verse from Matthew.  What you are looking for is 10:16 "Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be wise as serpents." They represent a bishop's duty to defend his flock-hence why they are on the shepherd's staff-and often appear dragon like to underscore the protection of those whom Christ has sent.

The appropriate serpent staff reference to Moses would be John 3:14.  You Protestants are usually fond of that verse.

As to the bishops throne, Luke 22:29-30 "just as My Father has granted Me a kingdom, I grant you that you may eat and drink at My table in My kingdom, and you will sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel."  Christ's throne, not Moses seat, which is occupied, as your verse indicate, by your friends the rabbis."

3All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not.
Do you & the church do most everything the Bishop tells you to do?
"So then, brothers, stand firm and hold to the traditions we passed on to you, whether by word of mouth or by letter."  II Thess. 2:15 "Since a bishop is entrusted with God's work, he must...hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught, so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it." Titus 1:7-9  You have any such bishops to to tell you what to do with Apostolic authority to conform to Christ?

4For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers.
I've known of several bishops that priests have thought of as tyrants, who do nothing.   Have you?
Sure, sometimes unjustly.  I've also know several bishops who were true fathers to the Faithful and shepherds of the flock, successors to the Apostles and stewards of Christ.  Have you?  If yes, why are you so fixated on those who fail in their duties?

5But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments,
You'll notice-no, of course you won't notice-that they are vested in celebrating the Divine Services, IOW robed with the authority to act in the name of the Church of Christ.  On the street they look like this:

that's the Patriarch of All Serbia, Pavle of blessed memory.

6And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,
I can see how you, all comfortable down in the safety of Texas, can't appreciate the inspiration such appearances bring in the Middle East, where Christians are killed daily.
 
8But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren.
9And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.
10Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t__46_yVnhs
Go to 0:30 in the video
Really? A funeral?  You really don't know any depths.

So, you didn't call the man who sired and/or raised you "father"?  How do you reconcile that to the Fifth Commandment?

"For though you have ten thousand  tutors in Christ, yet have you not many fathers: for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the Gospel" I Cor. 4:15

Btw, the word in the service is "δεσπότης" "master," the same word St. Peter uses when he exhorts the Christians "be subject to your masters with all fear; not only to the good and gentle, but also to the harsh." I Peter 2:18.  The word in your verse is "καθηγητὴς" "leader."

11But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant.
When has a bishop become your servant?
At his consecration, if not before.

12And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.
13But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.
Someone has already told you "Physician, heal thyself:
Why are you on an Orthodox Christian forum attempting to bring people into destruction with you?

14Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.
There are many services from EO bishops that stretch for many hours.  Do you see more tithes helping widows and orphans (as the scriptures tell us to), or do build onto the church?
The Gospel tells us Christ prayed at times all night.  Was He making a pretence?

Matthew 25:1“Then the kingdom of heaven will be comparable to ten virgins, who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. 2“Five of them were foolish, and five were prudent. 3“For when the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them, 4but the prudent took oil in flasks along with their lamps. 5“Now while the bridegroom was delaying, they all got drowsy and began to sleep. 6“But at midnight there was a shout, ‘Behold, the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.’ 7“Then all those virgins rose and trimmed their lamps. 8“The foolish said to the prudent, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ 9“But the prudent answered, ‘No, there will not be enough for us and you too; go instead to the dealers and buy some for yourselves.’ 10“And while they were going away to make the purchase, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding feast; and the door was shut. 11“Later the other virgins also came, saying, ‘Lord, lord, open up for us.’ 12“But he answered, ‘Truly I say to you, I do not know you.’ 13“Be on the alert then...26:36Then Jesus came with them to a place called Gethsemane, and said to His disciples, “Sit here while I go over there and pray.” 37And He took with Him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be grieved and distressed. 38Then He said to them, “My soul is deeply grieved, to the point of death; remain here and keep watch with Me.”...39And He went a little beyond them, and fell on His face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; yet not as I will, but as You will.” 40And He came to the disciples and found them sleeping, and said to Peter, “So, you men could not keep watch with Me for one hour? 41“Keep watching and praying that you may not enter into temptation; the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”  42He went away again a second time and prayed, saying, “My Father, if this cannot pass away unless I drink it, Your will be done.” 43Again He came and found them sleeping, for their eyes were heavy. 44And He left them again, and went away and prayed a third time, saying the same thing once more. 45Then He came to the disciples and said to them, “Are you still sleeping and resting?"

In the Gospel we see Christ praying a lot and building the Church.  I don't recall off hand seeing Him devoting Himself to collecting tithes for widows and orphans.

" Acts6:1Now at this time while the disciples were increasing in number, a complaint arose on the part of the Hellenistic Jews against the native Hebrews, because their widows were being overlooked in the daily serving of food. 2So the twelve summoned the congregation of the disciples and said, “It is not desirable for us to neglect the word of God in order to serve tables."  I guess the Apostles committed your Great Apostacy in their Acts.

15Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.
Like we pointed out above, Physician, heal thyself.
Why are you on an Orthodox Christian forum attempting to bring people into destruction with you?
I guess these scriptures could apply also to you.

16Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, Whosoever shall swear by the temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he is a debtor!
The Lord commanded us not to swear, but upon Ordination of a Bishop the Bishop swears vows (referencing the Orthodox Christian Service book by Isabel Hapgood page 328 of the Bishops ordination).  During this process he also makes several promises and his answers are not a simple "Yes be Yes, and No be No".
"And the things [plural, you would have to know the original Greek to appreciate the import] you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable men who will also be qualified to teach others."  So the Apostle St. Paul told St. (II) Timothy (2:2) whom he had consecrated as bishop.  The vows and promises the bishop makes at consecration eliminates a weak link in the chain.  Since you are missing any link to the Apostles, I can see how you miss that.

17Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifieth the gold?
Yep, here we have the good old OCA payoff by the WCC in the 1980's.  Of course the issues that the bishop promises not to hold services in other churches doesn't apply to ecumenism does it?  (found in the same book during the Bishop's ordination he promises not to do this, but absolutely does it anyway under ecumenism which bring WCC payoffs).
you would have to have a point in there somewhere for us to address it.

It's a wonder our Lord and savior spoke the word "hypocrites" several times in this chapter when referencing the pharisees, or the leading authorities of the church.  (We call the EO leaders Bishops).
Who's "we"?  

We call them bishops because that is what the Apostles named them.

I have to defer to you expertise on hypocrisy.

Does anybody else see the similarity?
Sure. They has never been a shortage on those would take cheap shots at Christ's Church.

You quote me wrong.  All I said was the serpents staff is used.   The bishops use it as Moses did.

Watch how this guy answers folks, lengthy, without any punch.   Look at the answer he gave me on the sworn vows of the bishops.  I quote text from the book.  I quote scripture where Christ told us not to swear....

He also called me a protestant, and said my friends the rabbis.... First, protestants do not have rabbis.  Second, I'm not a protestant.

You quote of the scriptures that said Christ prayed all night is actually wrong.  You quote it as if the example was a common situation.  So, put that into context of a bishop written service that is prayed nightly.   Consider that on the 4-5 hour services that are routine.  It's as the pharisees did.

The point of the ecumenism comment was because the OCA gets payoffs by the WCC.  Ecumenism vilates the canon of the Holy Apostles.  So the point absolutely stands.  The gold in the temple is greater than the temple to those bishops getting payoffs.  You know it and I know it.

The bishop in your photo means nothing.  Just because 1 is photographed that way doesn't invalidate the photos I have posted where they do live that way.  Also the patriarch is not photographed like the typical, wearing gold amulets.   The vestments during services does not matter in the context of the scripture I quoted, as Jesus was speaking to the hypocritical rabbis.

As far as the "copt" bishop, enjoy, because it applies to OO as well as EO.

As far as basically calling me a hypocrite by saying "we" and "bishop", it's funny, because many EO bishops do not recognize other EO bishops as bishops.  I just say bishop out of respect.  But the hypocrisy isn't by my standards, because I'm not the one who sold the church out.

It does not matter I posted a funeral video.   I did that because it was in the presence of numerous bishops & clergy, all accepting "master".  If you want to get into the "father" argument AGAIN, yes, I call my dad "father".  Christ was obviously speaking of persons of religious importance & leaders.  All of which the EO violates God's commands.   I also believe the apostles who wrote mere letters to one another, were fallible, and we should not replace the commands of God based on letters that could contain errors.   The command was clear, and alternatives given.

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« Reply #27 on: February 25, 2012, 03:43:09 PM »

6And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,


That's not an EO bishop.

And he is sitting under a tree, not an uppermost room or synagogue.
Like the Apostle St. Nathanial.  John 1:48

So I guess the answer to Jesusiam is no, he cherry picked verse doesn't apply.

Cherry picked?  Don't allow your mind to cause delusion.   I quoted a good sized block of verses, back to back.  EO & OO bishops do the same.  You know it and I know it.  They sit at the high place of honor right in front of the congregation all the time.  I witnessed this for years.
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« Reply #28 on: February 25, 2012, 03:57:27 PM »

The point of the ecumenism comment was because the OCA gets payoffs by the WCC.
Payoffs by the WCC? What kind of payoffs?

I'm sorry, but this is a charge you're going to have to prove.
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« Reply #29 on: February 25, 2012, 04:00:51 PM »

6And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,


That's not an EO bishop.

And he is sitting under a tree, not an uppermost room or synagogue.
Like the Apostle St. Nathanial.  John 1:48

So I guess the answer to Jesusiam is no, he cherry picked verse doesn't apply.

Cherry picked?  Don't allow your mind to cause delusion.   I quoted a good sized block of verses, back to back.  EO & OO bishops do the same.  You know it and I know it.  They sit at the high place of honor right in front of the congregation all the time.  I witnessed this for years.
So, who made you judge and jury of what Orthodox bishops do? You do realize that, according to the canons, if a heretic brings a charge of ecclesiastical wrongdoing against a bishop, the charge is to be thrown out immediately?
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« Reply #30 on: February 25, 2012, 04:04:45 PM »

yeshuaisiam,

Abuse of responsibility happens everywhere, including among the Amish and Mennonite groups. Being a hypocrite is a choice one makes. It has nothing to do with the clothes we wear or leadership role in the Church. And not every Pharisee or Jewish leader was bad. As seen in the Scripture below:

Luke 1:5-13
"In the days of Herod, king of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah, of the division of Abijah. And he had a wife from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and statutes of the Lord. But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and both were advanced in years.

Now while he was serving as priest before God when his division was on duty, according to the custom of the priesthood, he was chosen by lot to enter the temple of the Lord and burn incense. And the whole multitude of the people were praying outside at the hour of incense. And there appeared to him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. And Zechariah was troubled when he saw him, and fear fell upon him. But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zechariah, for your prayer has been heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John."



Now this shows that one can be high priest with all the fancy clothes that they wore and still not be a hypocrite, and so being a hypocrite has nothing to do with the actual clothes one wears or status in a religious group. No, instead it has everything to do with the inner and outer choices we make as individuals.  



 Also, I could be wrong about this, but as Christians the Apostles and Bishops after them sat on the seat(Authority) of Christ not the seat(Authority) of Moses. But if you are willing to grant the Orthodox Church Authority then why not obey it? Why be in defiance of it?


1.) You say that Orthodoxy is the original church and how later it got corrupted and not simply evolved. To believe that is to not believe in the very words of Christ. And so what you need to do is see if these issues are more complex beneath the surface for it's not as simple as you make it out to be. For even-though Jesus said don't call anyone Rabbi and Master, he still allowed people to call Him those things anyway. Also the Apostle Paul called himself a father, and he even mentions the Church having teachers. And so how strict do you want to interpret the words of Christ? If you want to be consistent in that super literal projectory then you must stop calling everyone father, mother, teacher, master.........etc.

Meaning, you can't call school teachers "teacher". You can't call your biological father "father". You can't call political leaders "Leader, teacher, fathers......". You can't call ethnic leaders like Martin Luther King Jr. a leader or a father of the civil rights movement of the 1960's......etc. And so how strict are you willing to go?

Obviously Jesus didn't mean it in that kind of way or else the Apostles would of refrained from using such words in regards to human beings.

But the point is, if you refuse to be super strict about this matter then you can't criticize the Orthodox Church for allowing it's spiritual leaders to be called such things. You would also have to criticize the Apostles Peter, John and Paul as well, for they too made use of such words in regards to people.

The Apostle Paul called himself a spiritual father, and how his church plant was to follow him as he followed Christ, and so it's about the source. Jesus was pointing to the Father as being the source. For He is the Father and it is through Him that we know what being a Father is like. And so we are fathers as we follow the Father! We are leaders as we follow Thee Leader!

And so it comes down to the source. Is the source from below(man, the earth) or from above(God, the Heavens). We are not to be fathers, teachers, leaders, masters in the way that is from below. Instead, we are to be fathers, teachers, leaders, masters....etc in the way that is from above!




2.) Taking an Oath is not bad in and of itself. You need to have discernment when it comes to this for I too use to be influenced back in my protestant days by a ministry that was against violence, taking oaths.....pretty much what Jehovia Witnesses, Seventh Day Adventists, and Mennonites advocate today. However, if you look at church history then you would know that Christians pretty much took an Oath when they became Baptized or Chrismated into the Church. And so Oaths aren't wrong in and of themselves. The issue is much deeper and complex than that.


3.) Christians being in the Army is not a bad thing in and of itself. Christians were in the Army from the first century on up. In fact, both positions of non-violence and pro army can be seen in the history of Christianity. These two views or positions co-existed within the Church for 2,000 years. In the book of Acts we see soldiers convert to Christianity! These soldiers never left the army after conversion, and so this tension co-existed within the Church for 2,000 years. Read these books for more info about the matter:

http://www.amazon.com/Pacifist-Option-Argument-Orthodox-Theology/dp/1573092444 (The Pacifist Option: The Moral Argument Against War in Eastern Orthodox Theology)




http://www.amazon.com/Virtue-War-Reclaiming-Christian-Traditions/dp/1928653170/ref=pd_sim_sbs_b_1 (Virtue Of War: Reclaiming the Classic Christian Traditions East and West)




I too use to have high convictions in the area of non-violence and the whole notion that Christians must be pacifists, but after looking at the issue in more detail in my Orthodox years I saw that what I came to believe in the past some many many years ago way back in my protestant years by way of a certain protestant online early church / anabaptist ministry was wrong. It was too simplistic and it didn't show all of the facts about the issue at hand. In order to be spiritually and intellectually honest I had to realize that the facts weren't all on one side.

And so now I see myself as a semi-pacifist. Why? Because now I know that both sides always co-existed with each other. Regardless if I like it or not!


Thank you for your response, and though I do disagree with some of it, I appreciate you engaging in thoughtful brotherly dialog.

1) The issues about calling people Rabbi, Father, or Master is really simple.   We were told not to do it by God.  In context of the scriptures, he was speaking of those in religious authority.  Hence, saying "he's my father" when in reference to a biological father, is much different.  To address the letters the apostles wrote, and quotes from Paul, the letters were just that, letters.  They did not have the book of Matthew already down on paper.   I don't know why they said it, but I would absolutely stand by the teachings of God, rather than possible errors the apostles made while writing epistles.  It was such a distinct order from our Christ, that he even gave us an alternative.  He said to "call each other Brethren/Brothers".

2) As far as taking oaths, we were also told not to do so.   We are not supposed to swear anything.  This means you are unable to be on a Jury (sworn in + you have to judge), you can't be a doctor, you can't work for the government (oath of office).   You can't be an EO bishop (I had to throw that in there) because you must SWEAR to be an EO bishop.  I'm not criticizing you in particular at all, but we all seem to make excuses and validations based off of "he did this, or this guy did that", rather than actually follow what God has told us to do.  He said "Do not swear".  "Let your yes be yes, and your no be no".   "Do not call any man rabbi, father, or master".  We hear "this guy did this or that", and its easy to start deviating from the orders of God.

3) We Christians were disarmed by Christ, as he had asked the apostles if they had their swords, and disarmed them.   In the United States at least, a soldier must "Swear in" by oath, which we were also told not to do.   We were told to love our enemies, and if persecuted by them, to pray for them.  We were told to turn the cheek.  We were told that the merciful are blessed, that the peacemakers are blessed.    The soldiers that converted in the bible it is not known if they remained soldiers.  It kind of was dropped after that.  I don't know what happened.

The Bishops say they take the seat of Christ, but I fond it ironic for them to be holding the staff of the serpents as Moses held.   But in context, it sounds quite even more hypocritical, as the bishops now are on God's throne, being called Master.

As far as the Amish & Mennonite go, I don't call them perfect either.  One day I should post a flow chart of how they actually follow the scriptures and many traditions of the Early church (somewhere 100-250 A.D.).  What they lack is the EO mojo... The mojo is the "succession".   "Here's my magical transfer of power to  you" - "zap".    Even then, if you really want to get technical, there were actually ordained RC's who became Anabaptist clergy.   So through some kind of "tag you now have the mojo" mentality, they get the juice... Today, they still cast lots in their own church for their clergy, not just for bishops.   Their clergy never swears.
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« Reply #31 on: February 25, 2012, 04:08:50 PM »

6And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,


That's not an EO bishop.

And he is sitting under a tree, not an uppermost room or synagogue.
Like the Apostle St. Nathanial.  John 1:48

So I guess the answer to Jesusiam is no, he cherry picked verse doesn't apply.

Cherry picked?  Don't allow your mind to cause delusion.   I quoted a good sized block of verses, back to back.  EO & OO bishops do the same.  You know it and I know it.  They sit at the high place of honor right in front of the congregation all the time.  I witnessed this for years.
So, who made you judge and jury of what Orthodox bishops do? You do realize that, according to the canons, if a heretic brings a charge of ecclesiastical wrongdoing against a bishop, the charge is to be thrown out immediately?

The subject was a question.  I posted scriptures spoken by God.   The bishops don't even follow the Canons anyway, which they SWORE (shouldn't have sworn) to follow.   Shall I post a photo of ecumenism?  Out of jurisdiction & their church holding services with the non-orthodox?  They know better, and as my OP referenced the scripture, the WCC has paid the OCA lots of money.  The gold was more precious than the temple or the Canons.
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« Reply #32 on: February 25, 2012, 04:13:20 PM »

So he's proven wrong, and just repeats himself? That's all he's got?

 Huh

(scratches head)

When others say No, Yesh says Yes. When others say That's not what it means, Yesh says That is what it means.

Is not! Is too! Is not! Is too!  Undecided It gets boring, to say the least.

Besides, what is a man supposedly zealous for the Anabaptist and Amish way of life doing on an Internet forum? Shouldn't he be out churning butter by lantern light or something?
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« Reply #33 on: February 25, 2012, 04:15:54 PM »

Why are you on an Orthodox Christian forum attempting to bring people into destruction with you?

Good question, but you misunderstand & the destruction part is a bit loaded as most of the arguments I present are backed in scripture, often quotes from God.

I seek answers, and if only met in hatred, ridicule, an insults (which have been many of the responses) it only validates to me that indeed my choice of leaving the EO church is valid.  As Christians, we should be able to engage in dialog that is not condescending and disrespectful, but rather in love, we should be able to engage in dialog and truth.  Answers met with anger is frustration, dissonance, and/or outrage/insult because "how dare you".

It's been a long journey, as EO was instilled in me since birth.

I view the EO church as hijacked, where the historical roots are real and many of the teachings are real, but through the years it has become something that has strayed (way beyond evolving) from the original church.  I believe in 90% of what EO is. 

But anyway, this is the free for all section under religious topics.   From what I read it is Hot/Controversial/debate-intended topics.  I'm not intending to take anybody from the church, in fact I have tried to be helpful to those in the church on other sections.   But these are real issues I have with the EO church.



They are not backed by Scripture, they are back by your bad exegesis of Scripture.

Let's run through Matthew 23 line by line.

1 Then spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples,

No explanation needed

2 Saying, The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat:
3 All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not.

Here, the Lord is not criticizing those who hold authority, but criticizing those who hold authority, but are hypocrites and do not practice the law which they teach. He tells them, "All therefore whatsoever they bid you over, that observe and do," meaning that they should observe what the Pharisees say to do, but also he says, "do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not," pointing out their hypocrisy, showing that they do not practice the very law which they prescribe and interpret. Our bishops, whom you have unjustly defamed may be hypocrites (although you have produced scant evidence to substantiate your libel), in which our Lord's instructions are clear, we must follow the law and their interpretation of the law but not follow by their example of hypocrisy.

4 For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers.

Here the Lord is not criticizing the Pharisees for being "tyrants" or whatnot, but he criticizes them for their unwillingness to care for people pastorally. This may be true of some clergy in the Orthodox Church, but it certainly is not always the case.

5 But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments,

Here the criticisms of the Lord are very specific. He does not condemn the use of phylacteries and of garments, rather he condemns them making their phylacteries broad and enlarging the borders of their garments. This is because the only reason a Pharisee would make his phylacteries broad would be to make it more obvious to others that he is praying while in public. Liturgical vestments do not serve the same purpose, hence your criticism is unfounded.

6 And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,
7 And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi.
8 But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren.

Here, the Lord does not forbid people calling their teachers by the title Rabbi or whatnot, he condemns those who seek to be called as such. Similarly, he does not forbid or condemn those who are given the uppermost rooms at feasts or the chief seats in synagogues because it is an honor which they deserve, he condemns those who vaingloriously seek to be given such honors, or worse still, bestow such honors upon themselves. This is why he says in verse five, "but all their works they do for to be seen of men," because he is condemning self-serving acts of vanity among those in positions of authority, and condemning those who would arrogate authority upon themselves when rightfully they should have none.

9 And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.
10 Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ.

These verses (8-10) are often abused twisted out of context. It should be obvious to all but the most dense of people that Christ does not literally mean that none should be called father on earth, as children still call their fathers "father". What the Lord means is to say that none should call a man father, and ascribe to him the absolute authority which is ascribed to God the Father. Similarly, elsewhere in the Scriptures slaves are told to obey their masters. It is clear that the Lord is not abolishing the social structures of father and son, master and student, or master and slave; he is saying that none should arrogate the title of Master for themselves, and that none should invest in a man the authority reserved for God the Father. We do not call our priests father so as to give them authority like God the Father. We call them father to recognize their special role in our lives as guides and teachers, much as a father guides and teaches his own son.

Furthermore, Jesus' reasoning for two of these prohibitions, the ones found in verses 8 and 10, are that He Himself is their one teacher and leader. We see however, that in 1 Corinthians 12:28, Paul writes, "And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues." It should be clear then that after the ascension of the Christ into the heavens, others were ordained as teachers, and it is they who rightfully can be called masters because they are invested with the authority of our risen Lord. It is interesting to note that more modern translations of Matthew 23:10 more accurately translate the Greek word, 'καθηγηταί' as 'leaders' instead of 'master' as in the KJV. With this more accurate meaning of the verse in mind, let us bring to mind how clear it is from Acts and the Epistles that a system of leadership existed in the Church after Jesus' ascension. Either the Apostles were disobedient, or this prohibition was purely temporal.

11 But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant.

Your criticism that bishops are not our servants is unfounded. The bishops are servants of God and of the people. It should be clear by reading the lives of people like St. John of Shanghai and San Francisco just how much of a servant of the people one of the greatest among us was.

12 And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.
13 But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.
14 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.

Here the Lord does not condemn long prayer, as you have wrongly implied. He condemns long prayer for pretense. Similarly, he condemns not building churches at the expense of the poor (as if it were an either or choice), he condemns the Pharisees who would use their authority to defraud widows' families of their money by taking advantage of the widows' misfortune. If you feel that you are capable of judging the hearts of our clergy on either count, then you may go right on ahead with your madness.

15 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.

Again, if you think you can judge the hearts of our faithful and clergy, go right on ahead.

16 Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, Whosoever shall swear by the temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he is a debtor!

You obviously do not understand what the Lord means when he prohibits oaths. The prohibition is against making oaths without just cause (thus profaning God, the heavens or whatever one might swear by). Solemn oaths are not forbidden, as we can see that God at times swears by himself (Gen 22:16-17), that Jesus in Matthew 26:63 is asked under oath whether he is the Son of God, to which he does not protest that one ought not make oaths, and that Paul in Second Corinthians 1:23 swears by an oath as well.

17 Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifieth the gold?

What does this verse have to do with the OCA? Did the OCA start teaching that the gold is greater than the Church? Give me a break.

I don't agree with some of your interpretations.  Verse 4 for example.

Verse 16 referenced scripture where Jesus just gave an answer, not an oath.

Please refer to several of my other posts about saying "Master".   Paul wrote letters, and probably did not have access to Matthews written account of Christ.   Jesus clearly gave us a direct order to call no man master, but rather brethren.   "No one is above anybody else".

So then the excuses fly, the church sings and calls him "despota (master)", and he gets his cool eagle carpet circle.   But of course... there is an excuse for that.
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« Reply #34 on: February 25, 2012, 04:22:02 PM »

So he's proven wrong, and just repeats himself? That's all he's got?

 Huh

(scratches head)

When others say No, Yesh says Yes. When others say That's not what it means, Yesh says That is what it means.

Is not! Is too! Is not! Is too!  Undecided It gets boring, to say the least.

Besides, what is a man supposedly zealous for the Anabaptist and Amish way of life doing on an Internet forum? Shouldn't he be out churning butter by lantern light or something?

Anabaptists theology is different than the ordnung that individual churches and groups take on.   It's "a way of life" in the group.   Some are horse and buggy and no power.  Others more modern.  Others fully modern.

My family is in the middle.  We don't have T.V.   We do have the internet for a tool.   We cook everything from scratch.  We have home made buns in the solar oven outside right now.  We have about a 1 acre garden.  My sons and daughters all make clay pots, mugs, and we fire them in the kiln.  We have chickens, fresh eggs and meat, and are working our way into a sheep to milk for milk, butter, and cheese.  I have built a cheese press as well.  As I type this my wife is seam ripping fabric and about to head back to the sewing table.  My daughter also weaves.  They all wear long dresses & head coverings.   We are working our way to be fully off the grid.  I'm in the process of building a solar water heater right now.  Once that  happens we'll minimize our need for power & needs from the world.   But that's all kind of ordnung stuff and personal preference as far as where I attend church.
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« Reply #35 on: February 25, 2012, 04:23:51 PM »

It doesn't matter what definitions or explanations you give him. He will only accept his own interpretations, ever, period.

At least Alfred Persson isn't going to be lonely anymore in his church of one. It's a church of two, now.
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« Reply #36 on: February 25, 2012, 04:27:47 PM »

The point of the ecumenism comment was because the OCA gets payoffs by the WCC.
Payoffs by the WCC? What kind of payoffs?

I'm sorry, but this is a charge you're going to have to prove.

I say payoffs... Because I feel they sold themselves out to the WCC and ecumenism.  Also they have been the benefactors of money from the NCC.  Rather than making me prove it where web sites would be called "a blog" or discredited, research it with google at sites you'd find appropriate for information.  I mean this stuff is not secretive or anything.  It's known.  Some of the old school ROCOR people (before ROCOR accepted ecumenism) probably know about this info.  

They would call it "donations or funding".  There has been a lot of money transferred, and I'm sure there are others on this forum who know about this as well.  
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« Reply #37 on: February 25, 2012, 04:30:46 PM »

It doesn't matter what definitions or explanations you give him. He will only accept his own interpretations, ever, period.

At least Alfred Persson isn't going to be lonely anymore in his church of one. It's a church of two, now.


With his nearly 1000 posts since stating in his first post his intention to become Orthodox again, or for real, his motivation seems quite different.
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« Reply #38 on: February 25, 2012, 04:38:52 PM »

The point of the ecumenism comment was because the OCA gets payoffs by the WCC.
Payoffs by the WCC? What kind of payoffs?

I'm sorry, but this is a charge you're going to have to prove.

I say payoffs... Because I feel they sold themselves out to the WCC and ecumenism.  Also they have been the benefactors of money from the NCC.  Rather than making me prove it where web sites would be called "a blog" or discredited, research it with google at sites you'd find appropriate for information.  I mean this stuff is not secretive or anything.  It's known.  Some of the old school ROCOR people (before ROCOR accepted ecumenism) probably know about this info.  

They would call it "donations or funding".  There has been a lot of money transferred, and I'm sure there are others on this forum who know about this as well.  

No, you made the claim, you show your work.

Thank goodness you didn't decide to become an attorney. You don't know what libel is.
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« Reply #39 on: February 25, 2012, 04:40:38 PM »

6And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,


That's not an EO bishop.

And he is sitting under a tree, not an uppermost room or synagogue.
Like the Apostle St. Nathanial.  John 1:48

So I guess the answer to Jesusiam is no, he cherry picked verse doesn't apply.

Cherry picked?  Don't allow your mind to cause delusion.   I quoted a good sized block of verses, back to back.  EO & OO bishops do the same.  You know it and I know it.  They sit at the high place of honor right in front of the congregation all the time.  I witnessed this for years.

Where my grandfather came from, the bishops were slaughtered like sheep for their faith in Christ.  That was witnessed.
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« Reply #40 on: February 25, 2012, 04:45:33 PM »

It doesn't matter what definitions or explanations you give him. He will only accept his own interpretations, ever, period.

At least Alfred Persson isn't going to be lonely anymore in his church of one. It's a church of two, now.

If God told you to not swear oaths, but somebody tells you "you can do it because so and so did it", is it right?
If God told you not to call people Rabbi, Father, or Master, but somebody tells you "hey check out who did it, so can you", is it right?
If God told you that your nobody in your church was above anybody else, but the clergy is above the others, is it right?
If God told you not to swear, but somebody tells you "it's okay to swear for such and such reason", is it right?

I always root back to what God told us.  Explaining "yeah but Paul did it" when he did not witness the ministry of Christ, nor had a copy of the book of Matthew handy, plus most often written in letters, as the explanation... I don't buy it.   Paul's letters are nice, but I don't find them infallible, as well as I don't find Paul infallible.  Now the Pope... (LOL)   People are wanting me to accept explanations on why not to obey God.

If it was a complete translation issue, I would understand.  If it was a context issue, I would understand.

I've given direct context - ie - Christ was speaking of the Rabbis, leaders, or authority personages of the church.  
I've given translations - Greek Despota = English Master.  I've even cited dictionary resources in this matter, as well as EO texts.

The excuses I've been given = Paul did it.  What about your bio father?  Out of context examples where Christ says "Aren't you the Rabbis of Israel?", where he wasn't addressing them as Rabbis, but stating their title of Israel.  

So as you can see, no matter what explanation I've been given on this one SIMPLE matter, they are out of context or attacks.  Come on people, you've got to know this practice is wrong.  God said "Don't Do it!!!!".

Call your bishop your Brother or bishop, but not Master.  Call your priest your Brother or presbyter, but not Father.  Nobody is elevated.  That's exactly what God said.  That's why we as lay people should be washing the feet of the clergy, and the clergy wash ours as well, which never happens.

Just please accept that explanations that are out of context will not solve the issue.
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« Reply #41 on: February 25, 2012, 04:49:08 PM »

The point of the ecumenism comment was because the OCA gets payoffs by the WCC.
Payoffs by the WCC? What kind of payoffs?

I'm sorry, but this is a charge you're going to have to prove.

I say payoffs... Because I feel they sold themselves out to the WCC and ecumenism.  Also they have been the benefactors of money from the NCC.  Rather than making me prove it where web sites would be called "a blog" or discredited, research it with google at sites you'd find appropriate for information.  I mean this stuff is not secretive or anything.  It's known.  Some of the old school ROCOR people (before ROCOR accepted ecumenism) probably know about this info.  

They would call it "donations or funding".  There has been a lot of money transferred, and I'm sure there are others on this forum who know about this as well.  

No, you made the claim, you show your work.

Thank goodness you didn't decide to become an attorney. You don't know what libel is.

What source would satisfy you?

I've been told on this forum
1) Wikipedia is not a source
2) Internet sites are not a source
3) Blogs are not a source
4) Some web site of some guy is not a source

Well, guess what, all I can do is give web sites.   But I've witnessed this.  It's not secretive either.  There are people on this forum that absolutely know that the WCC gives money to the OCA.   It's not like this big bad secret that I'm making claim to.   If you don't know about it, you haven't looked into the WCC much.  It may even state it on the WCC web site.   Look around.  Use google.
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« Reply #42 on: February 25, 2012, 04:56:31 PM »

It doesn't matter what definitions or explanations you give him. He will only accept his own interpretations, ever, period.

At least Alfred Persson isn't going to be lonely anymore in his church of one. It's a church of two, now.


With his nearly 1000 posts since stating in his first post his intention to become Orthodox again, or for real, his motivation seems quite different.

If you would like and if I'm disturbing you brother, I'll go away or only participate in ways that are "EO friendly".   If you have followed me that long I respect your patience.  

Also they could ban me if they don't want me here.  It's their forum, and a simple security level.  It is a debate area.... But if it does bother on personal request I'll stop.   I don't mind engaging in friendlier ways.

EDIT - I will stop for anybody who has any faith being harmed by my posts.  Simply request it, and I'll try to never debate again here (except politics in the section, THAT'S game on!!! Wink )   My intent is NOT to hurt any faith.   You can even PM me the request.  If I just make anybody mad or annoy, that's one thing, but if I'm damaging faith in any way, just tell me somehow PM or post, I'll stop doing this forever on the forum.
 
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« Reply #43 on: February 25, 2012, 05:09:35 PM »

It doesn't matter what definitions or explanations you give him. He will only accept his own interpretations, ever, period.

At least Alfred Persson isn't going to be lonely anymore in his church of one. It's a church of two, now.

If God told you to not swear oaths, but somebody tells you "you can do it because so and so did it", is it right?
If God told you not to call people Rabbi, Father, or Master, but somebody tells you "hey check out who did it, so can you", is it right?
If God told you that your nobody in your church was above anybody else, but the clergy is above the others, is it right?
If God told you not to swear, but somebody tells you "it's okay to swear for such and such reason", is it right?
If God told you not to bear false witness but to judge rightly, but you bear false witness under the justification that it's you doing it, is it right?

I always root back to what God told us.  Explaining "yeah but Paul did it" when he did not witness the ministry of Christ, nor had a copy of the book of Matthew handy, plus most often written in letters, as the explanation... I don't buy it.   Paul's letters are nice, but I don't find them infallible, as well as I don't find Paul infallible.  Now the Pope... (LOL)   People are wanting me to accept explanations on why not to obey God.
So Paul was less an apostle than the Twelve. Roll Eyes No wonder no one here takes you seriously. You don't receive St. Paul; therefore, you don't receive Christ. Or should I say that you follow a Jesus you have made in your own image?
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« Reply #44 on: February 25, 2012, 05:13:47 PM »

The point of the ecumenism comment was because the OCA gets payoffs by the WCC.
Payoffs by the WCC? What kind of payoffs?

I'm sorry, but this is a charge you're going to have to prove.

I say payoffs... Because I feel they sold themselves out to the WCC and ecumenism.  Also they have been the benefactors of money from the NCC.  Rather than making me prove it where web sites would be called "a blog" or discredited, research it with google at sites you'd find appropriate for information.  I mean this stuff is not secretive or anything.  It's known.  Some of the old school ROCOR people (before ROCOR accepted ecumenism) probably know about this info.  

They would call it "donations or funding".  There has been a lot of money transferred, and I'm sure there are others on this forum who know about this as well.  

No, you made the claim, you show your work.

Thank goodness you didn't decide to become an attorney. You don't know what libel is.

What source would satisfy you?

I've been told on this forum
1) Wikipedia is not a source
2) Internet sites are not a source
3) Blogs are not a source
4) Some web site of some guy is not a source

Well, guess what, all I can do is give web sites.
Well, give them to us, and let us decide how credible they are.

But I've witnessed this.  It's not secretive either.  There are people on this forum that absolutely know that the WCC gives money to the OCA.
Name them.

It's not like this big bad secret that I'm making claim to.   If you don't know about it, you haven't looked into the WCC much.  It may even state it on the WCC web site.   Look around.  Use google.
No, you made the claim, you back it up. We're not going to do your job for you just because you're too lazy to do it yourself.
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