Can anybody give me a good Oriental Orthodox apologetic article against the "Charismatic movement"?
Hi, Apu. I'm not aware of any articles that are specifically Oriental Orthodox in origin, but Eastern Orthodox articles would articulate the same theological perspective in this case. Here are a few:http://orthodoxinfo.com/inquirers/frseraphim_charismatics.aspxhttp://orthodoxinfo.com/inquirers/charmov.aspxhttp://orthodoxinfo.com/inquirers/ec_glossalalia.aspxhttp://orthodoxinfo.com/inquirers/toronto.aspxhttp://orthodoxinfo.com/inquirers/ec_secondcoming.aspxhttp://orthodoxinfo.com/inquirers/ec_thousandyearreign.aspxhttp://orthodoxinfo.com/inquirers/toronto.aspx
I am in agreement with both of you. I also find these type of worship by Orthodox faithful dangerous. But now it is not that rare to find Orthodox priests and in some cases even Bishops leading people in these kind of worship services; during Bible classes. Even when you find it distasteful, it is difficult to argue that it is un-Orthodox.
Oh, clap your hands, all you peoples!
Shout to God with the voice of triumph!
For the Lord Most High is awesome;
He is a great King over all the earth.
Shout joyfully to the Lord, all the earth;
Break forth in song, rejoice, and sing praises.
These and many scripture passages are used to justify it. Though personally I find it distateful, have come to accept it, as long as this kind of worship is not used as a substitute for divine liturgy and canonical prayers; but something done in addition to those.
Actually, it is not that difficult to argue against it as a part of our corporate worship. Here are two articles that do so eloquently:http://orthodoxyandheterodoxy.org/2013/02/26/god-is-much-bigger-than-your-style-of-worship-or-mine/http://orthodoxyandheterodoxy.org/2012/09/10/orthodox-worship-versus-contemporary-worship/
These and many scripture passages are used to justify it.
And how many of them are circumcised? I hope they will have their non-adherence to that very important Scriptural practice corrected, but I suppose they won't be clapping and shouting joyfully (though I imagine there will be shouting).
Sadly, we have clergy who try to keep our people from leaving our Churches for the charismatic groups by trying to imitate their gimmicks, and very poorly at that. Their efforts would be better spent passing on real Orthodoxy and Orthopraxis rather than by pretending to be Pentecostals with sacraments. Every time they try to imitate what others do and find "Scriptural justifications" for those things instead of doing what we ought to do, they make our people think that there's something wrong with our faith and something right with that of the heretics.
And that's to say nothing of how we "do ministry" in the larger context. Many of these groups attract people because they do what Roman Catholics call the "spiritual and corporal works of mercy". Our people "dump all that stuff" on the priest, who can't do it all because he's one person, and so nothing gets done; then the people complain about the Church not doing enough and "look at the Pentecostals", etc. That is also a major problem. You don't need a priest to be good to people in need and offer them assistance and love. Granted, we must work together with the clergy, esp. those responsible for us, but at the same time, our people aren't very interested in visiting sick people, helping people in need, tithing, supporting the needs of the Church, etc. until they leave for the other groups. But in the early Church, it was recognised that the priests couldn't do everything on their own, so deacons and lay people took on a lot of those responsibilities in cooperation with the priests. There's Scriptural support for that too. The entire book of Acts, for example.
Are there any OO groups that go so far as to "speak in tongues" and do other so-called "manifestations of the Holy Spirit" like the Charismatics? I've heard this went through parts of EOxy for a short time (~70's IIRC) with some still remnant fringe groups that push it, and just wonder if a similar thing happened in parts of OOxy.
Not that I'm aware of. I'd imagine that anyone trying to introduce this sort of thing would be anathematized fairly quickly. Here are some of the decisions of the Coptic Orthodox Holy Synod on checking Protestant influence:http://www.arabwestreport.info/year-2012/week-12/43-ecumenical-relations-coptic-orthodox-church-mentioned-decisions-holy-synod
• Forbid priests to accept invitations to appear at Protestant gatherings unless they had first received the express approval of the Patriarchate (June 1996)
• Warned against unauthorized “house meetings” and the spread of Protestant books, cassettes, and CDs (June 1996, June 2001)
• Authorized a committee for the revising of religious books to remove any Protestant influence or doctrine, warning that “the statement that we are all one in Jesus is deceiving” (June 1998)
• Warned specifically against music as a means of spreading Protestant influence and theology [H.H. Pope Shenouda III] (June 1998)
• Declared that “clergy should be careful about teachers in church and check whether they are influenced by Protestant thought or not” (June 1998)
• Convened a conference on how to face Protestant activities and how to protect the Coptic Orthodox Church from the spread of Protestant influence from the inside out (October 1998)
• Instructed Orthodox clergy not to write introductions for non-Orthodox books so as not to give Protestants the opportunity to deliver a non-Orthodox message to Orthodox believers (May 1999)
• Warned Orthodox Christians against attending non-Orthodox retreats (May 1999)
• Warned Orthodox youth not to join in activities held in joint cooperation with Protestants or Roman Catholics, including sports activities, conferences and lectures, “since these are used for proselytism”; The Synod is explicit that “these are very dangerous issues” (June 2000)
• Convened a conference to warn the Coptic Orthodox faithful against the activities of the Seventh Day Adventists (October 2002)
• Organized a number of seminars, sermons, spiritual days and conferences stressing Orthodox dogma, differences with the Protestants, and explaining why the Coptic Orthodox Church rejects false unity, declaring that, “God is not only Love but the Truth” (June-September 2003)
• Warned specifically against the activities of the Southern Baptist Convention, which published materials stating explicitly that they were targeting the Coptic Orthodox Christians of Egypt for conversion (June 2006)
• Prohibited Coptic clergy from appearing on Protestant satellite channels (2009)
• Prohibited Coptic Orthodox bookstores from carrying a number of heterodox titles, materials and publications (1999, 2005, 2007, 2009, 2010)
And H.H. Pope Tawadros II says:
“Let us not forget that Unorthodox worship can pollute our being, leading to forgetfulness. It can cause one's mind to drift quite far, rendering him unable to value the Traditional Orthodox melodies and style of Church Worship.[...] Orthodox worship is distinct in its constant reminder of the real presence of Christ and His saints in our lives. We must be careful to ensure that the worship songs we use are Orthodox in their origin, lyrics, melodies and in their spirit. Communion and unity with Christ ought to be embedded within their meaning.”
Notice that His Holiness the Pope emphasizes that the songs utilized in our corporate worship should be wholly Orthodox not only in lyrics, but also in melody, spirit and origin. That is to say, they should come from an Orthodox source and represent an Orthodox approach to worshipping God.
What a shame. I agree with Mor Ephrem that 9 times out of 10 this kind of thing is due to the fact that people are afraid because members of their congregation are leaving for Evangelical or Charismatic groups. The solution is to teach the people how to benefit from the Liturgy and to re-examine our authentic Orthodox spirituality.
At the end of the day, I'm confident that the gates of hell will not prevail and that God will preserve His Church. This fad will die off in 20 years or so and the Church will still be here.