Author Topic: Is the Theotokos sinless from conception to dormition in Coptic/Oriental Church?  (Read 9300 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike
Ah yes, let's listen to what English grammarians say about Romans rather than Ancient Greek readings

Let's just stick to common sense, because I'm not a Greek grammarian.

Have you read his commentary on Hebrews 6:4-6? It's not great. Repentance is repentance. English is English, and Greek is Greek.

More points for you, though. +2
« Last Edit: January 24, 2017, 10:54:47 PM by mcarmichael »
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline minasoliman

  • Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
  • Section Moderator
  • Stratopedarches
  • *****
  • Posts: 20,196
  • Pray for me St. Severus
  • Faith: Oriental Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: Coptic
Ah yes, let's listen to what English grammarians say about Romans rather than Ancient Greek readings

Let's just stick to common sense, because I'm not a Greek grammarian.

Have you read his commentary on Hebrews 6:4-6? It's awful. Repentance is repentance. English is English, and Greek is Greek.

More points for you, though. +2

Yes let's stick to common sense:  who am I to trust? Your 21st century criticisms or someone as early as possible in the church who has a very good idea and closer tradition to what the Scriptures say?
Vain existence can never exist, for "unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain." (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike
Ah yes, let's listen to what English grammarians say about Romans rather than Ancient Greek readings

Let's just stick to common sense, because I'm not a Greek grammarian.

Have you read his commentary on Hebrews 6:4-6? It's awful. Repentance is repentance. English is English, and Greek is Greek.

More points for you, though. +2

Yes let's stick to common sense:  who am I to trust? Your 21st century criticisms or someone as early as possible in the church who has a very good idea and closer tradition to what the Scriptures say?

Use your own common sense, I beg.

The saints aren't infallible. Thus we are to use our own discernment. No?

And I don't need a lesson. Let's stick to the topic.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2017, 10:58:48 PM by mcarmichael »
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline minasoliman

  • Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
  • Section Moderator
  • Stratopedarches
  • *****
  • Posts: 20,196
  • Pray for me St. Severus
  • Faith: Oriental Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: Coptic
Not by their own efforts, but by the grace of Christ, they can be.

Only Christ was without sin out of His own efforts, because He is the antithesis of sin by nature and hypostasis.

Sin is not something you just do, but if there's a good analogy to give you, it pollutes the spiritual air you are in.  You may not have sat in a garbage dump, but live close to it and you'll stink.

The stink of death is over all people and all fall short of the glory of God, even those who have not sinned.  Only Christ came and destroyed such a spiritual stench.

There can be speculations she isn't the first one who could be considered "sinless" (think of certain Old Testament prophets).  I have no problems with it, but like I said, I don't dwell on it that much, except stand in awe of the choice of God in her, that through her would be my salvation.  Meditate on those last six words:  "through her would be my salvation".

And know this final thought:  she's not alone in her virtues.  When she's capable of that kind of perfection with the grace of God guiding her "she is full of grace", the Church is telling you, "so can you...so can you!"  Christ actually commands it, and He tells you not to be perfect as He Himself Jesus the human being is, but be perfect as my Father is!  Then you might understand why she was chosen to be His mother.

So food for thought, when you have issues with the idea of sinlessness of Mary, why do you deny yourself this same goal to reach the stature she has?
« Last Edit: January 24, 2017, 11:11:55 PM by minasoliman »
Vain existence can never exist, for "unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain." (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike
Not by their own efforts, but by the grace of Christ, they can be.

Only Christ was without sin out of His own efforts, because He is the antithesis of sin by nature and hypostasis.

Sin is not something you just do, but if there's a good analogy to give you, it pollutes the spiritual air you are in.  You may not have sat in a garbage dump, but live close to it and you'll stink.

The stink of death is over all people and all fall short of the glory of God, even those who have not sinned.  Only Christ came and destroyed such a spiritual stench.

There can be speculations she isn't the first one who could be considered "sinless".  I have no problems with it, but like I said, I don't dwell on it that much, except stand in awe of the choice of God in her, that through her would be my salvation.  Meditate on those last six words:  "through her would be my salvation".

And know this final thought:  she's not alone in her virtues.  When she's capable of that kind of perfect with the grace of God guiding her "she is full of grace", the Church is telling you, "so can you...so can you!"

So food for thought, when you have issues with the idea of sinlessness of Mary, why do you deny yourself this same goal to reach the stature she has?

I have denied no such thing.

Too busy being very cryptic.

Also, because I have sinned.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2017, 11:14:52 PM by mcarmichael »
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline minasoliman

  • Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
  • Section Moderator
  • Stratopedarches
  • *****
  • Posts: 20,196
  • Pray for me St. Severus
  • Faith: Oriental Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: Coptic
Who's being cryptic?
Vain existence can never exist, for "unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain." (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike
Who's being cryptic?

Who hasn't sinned?

This is another topic, but how is she the "prototype", if indeed she was without sin, according to the tradition?

Food for thought.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2017, 11:29:19 PM by mcarmichael »
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike
Where it says "For all have sinned, and fall short of the glory of God", it is apparent that Christ is the exception to the rule.

Enough with Fr. Seraphim Rose's "Mary never sinned, either in thought, word, or deed." Who cares? Not Mor Ephrem.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2017, 11:41:55 PM by mcarmichael »
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike

I'm not fixated. I don't need to disprove anything.

And the Church doesn't need to prove anything to you.


You are correct. Which is not to say that the Church is without obligation, however.

I'm happy to get along without this doctrine. However I happen to know that it happens to be a huge "stumbling block" for many of my white Protestant friends (whom I hope to convert.)

Besides that though, if we accept her ever-sinlessness, why not just be Catholic and be done with it?
« Last Edit: January 25, 2017, 12:03:19 AM by mcarmichael »
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike
Lord, have mercy.
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike
Isn't there an argument that she may have sinned and had her sins remitted, according to the word given to King Solomon in 2 Chronicles:

"...if My people, who are called by My name, shall humble themselves and pray, and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and will heal their land." (KJ21) (a very important point)

?

Or is it supposed that an ontyological change should have occurred, similar to Adam's?

Because wasn't the Blessed Virgin raised "According to the law and to the testimony"? Of which it is said: "if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them." - Isaiah 8:20

I'm not sure that I was able to stress enough the significance of the passage from 2 Chronicles, however I have managed to make a point of making an attempt to do so, here.
« Last Edit: January 25, 2017, 03:45:10 AM by mcarmichael »
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike
There is much to be said for tradition. Especially among an illiterate people. I don't mean to condemn anyone for holding to this tradition, only I hope not to be condemned for not holding to it.

The end.
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike

Actually St. John Chrysostom tells us that the "likeness of the transgression of Adam" describes the reigning of death, not those who had not sinned.  That phrase is all on its own without any descriptions.

Wait one second. Isn't it also true that St. John Chrysostom also suggested that she may have sinned, in his commentary on John?

"For where parents cause no impediment or hindrance in things belonging to God, it is our bounden duty to give way to them, and there is great danger in not doing so; but when they require anything unseasonably, and cause hindrance in any spiritual matter, it is unsafe to obey. And therefore He answered thus in this place, and again elsewhere, "Who is My mother, and who are My brethren?" (Matt. 11,48), because they did not yet think rightly of Him; and she, because she had borne Him, claimed, according to the custom of other mothers, to direct Him in all things, when she ought to have reverenced and worshiped Him. This then was the reason why He answered as He did on that occassion....And so this was a reason why He rebuked her on that occasion, saying, "Woman, what have I to do with thee?" instructing her for the future not to do the like; because, though He was careful to honor His mother, yet He cared much for the salvation of her soul." (Homilies on the Gospel According to St. John, 21)

I'm feeling more Orthodox already.
« Last Edit: January 25, 2017, 09:37:23 AM by mcarmichael »
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline Mor Ephrem

  • A highly skilled and trained Freudian feminist slut
  • Section Moderator
  • Hypatos
  • *****
  • Posts: 34,710
    • OrthodoxChristianity.net
  • Faith: Mercenary Freudianism
  • Jurisdiction: Texas Feminist Coptic
According to the good book: "For all have sinned, and fall short of the glory of God."

Somebody prove to me that this doesn't apply to the Theotokos, according to your "alternate" mathematics?

Serious. Try to prove it.

Our teaching is that she never committed personal sins.  That is to say, she never chose to sin, and she was able to do this by the grace of God. 

You are citing one clause in Romans as evidence to the contrary.  One clause in a much bigger argument that even people of sound mind often find hard to follow. 

You're going to need to do better. 

Offline Mor Ephrem

  • A highly skilled and trained Freudian feminist slut
  • Section Moderator
  • Hypatos
  • *****
  • Posts: 34,710
    • OrthodoxChristianity.net
  • Faith: Mercenary Freudianism
  • Jurisdiction: Texas Feminist Coptic
Where it says "For all have sinned, and fall short of the glory of God", it is apparent that Christ is the exception to the rule.

How is it apparent?  "All" is "all", right? 

Quote
Enough with Fr. Seraphim Rose's "Mary never sinned, either in thought, word, or deed." Who cares? Not Mor Ephrem.

More Fr Seraphim Rose, less mcarmichael. 

Offline Mor Ephrem

  • A highly skilled and trained Freudian feminist slut
  • Section Moderator
  • Hypatos
  • *****
  • Posts: 34,710
    • OrthodoxChristianity.net
  • Faith: Mercenary Freudianism
  • Jurisdiction: Texas Feminist Coptic

I'm not fixated. I don't need to disprove anything.

And the Church doesn't need to prove anything to you.


You are correct. Which is not to say that the Church is without obligation, however.

I'm happy to get along without this doctrine. However I happen to know that it happens to be a huge "stumbling block" for many of my white Protestant friends (whom I hope to convert.)

Convert to what? 

Quote
Besides that though, if we accept her ever-sinlessness, why not just be Catholic and be done with it?

Who said "ever-sinlessness"?  You have a lot to learn.

Offline Mor Ephrem

  • A highly skilled and trained Freudian feminist slut
  • Section Moderator
  • Hypatos
  • *****
  • Posts: 34,710
    • OrthodoxChristianity.net
  • Faith: Mercenary Freudianism
  • Jurisdiction: Texas Feminist Coptic
Isn't there an argument that she may have sinned and had her sins remitted, according to the word given to King Solomon in 2 Chronicles:

"...if My people, who are called by My name, shall humble themselves and pray, and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and will heal their land." (KJ21) (a very important point)

?

No, there is no such argument. 

Since you are so insistent that she must have committed sins, what sins do you imagine she committed? 

Offline Mor Ephrem

  • A highly skilled and trained Freudian feminist slut
  • Section Moderator
  • Hypatos
  • *****
  • Posts: 34,710
    • OrthodoxChristianity.net
  • Faith: Mercenary Freudianism
  • Jurisdiction: Texas Feminist Coptic
The end.

Wait one second.

lol

Quote
Isn't it also true that St. John Chrysostom also suggested that she may have sinned, in his commentary on John?

Not a huge fan of St. John Chrysostom's commentary...

Offline Antonious Nikolas

  • Orthodox Christian, Miaphysite
  • Taxiarches
  • **********
  • Posts: 7,237
  • Saint Nicholas the Wonderworker, Bishop of Myra
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Oriental Orthodox Church
You take my strength for weakness.
What?

Nevermind..

[edited for content]

No comment.

Just stick with this from now on.


I might be willing to settle for no "willful" sins, ... but no promises.

No one cares.

+1

Nobody but mcarmichael, you meant. Maybe the OP. Maybe the Almighty..

But, hey, who got points? Mor Ephrem, that's who.

The OP says the question has been answered to his satisfaction.  The Almighty already knows about His Mother.  That just leaves mcarmichael.

According to the good book: "For all have sinned, and fall short of the glory of God."

Somebody prove to me that this doesn't apply to the Theotokos, according to your "alternate" mathematics?

Serious. Try to prove it.

It's already been proven.  You've just chosen to ignore it.  It has to do with the definition of the term "sin".

You take my strength for weakness.
What?

Nevermind..

[edited for content]

No comment.

Just stick with this from now on.


I might be willing to settle for no "willful" sins, ... but no promises.

No one cares.

+1

Nobody but mcarmichael, you meant. Maybe the OP. Maybe the Almighty..

But, hey, who got points? Mor Ephrem, that's who.

The OP says the question has been answered to his satisfaction.  The Almighty already knows about His Mother.  That just leaves mcarmichael.

According to the good book: "For all have sinned, and fall short of the glory of God."

Somebody prove to me that this doesn't apply to the Theotokos, according to your "alternate" mathematics?

Serious. Try to prove it.

It's already been proven.  You've just chosen to ignore it.  It has to do with the definition of the term "sin".

You take my strength for weakness.
What?

Nevermind..

[edited for content]

No comment.

Just stick with this from now on.


I might be willing to settle for no "willful" sins, ... but no promises.

No one cares.

+1

Nobody but mcarmichael, you meant. Maybe the OP. Maybe the Almighty..

But, hey, who got points? Mor Ephrem, that's who.

The OP says the question has been answered to his satisfaction.  The Almighty already knows about His Mother.  That just leaves mcarmichael.

According to the good book: "For all have sinned, and fall short of the glory of God."

Somebody prove to me that this doesn't apply to the Theotokos, according to your "alternate" mathematics?

Serious. Try to prove it.

It's already been proven.  You've just chosen to ignore it.  It has to do with the definition of the term "sin".

The saints aren't infallible. Thus we are to use our own discernment. No?

No.  We trust the mind of the Church.  Trusting "our own discernment" we may fall into error.  That is the Protestant way.

And I don't need a lesson.

Apparently, you do.

Where it says "For all have sinned, and fall short of the glory of God", it is apparent that Christ is the exception to the rule.

Enough with Fr. Seraphim Rose's "Mary never sinned, either in thought, word, or deed." Who cares? Not Mor Ephrem.

This has already been explained.  If it doesn't sit well with your Protestant sensibilities, too bad.  The Church isn't going to adjust its teachings in order to placate would-be converts from Protestantism with anti-Marian hang-ups because of their wrongheaded rejection of Catholicism.

You are correct. Which is not to say that the Church is without obligation, however.

Obligation to uphold its Tradition, not to mitigate the fears of would-be converts from Protestantism at the expense of right teaching on the Theotokos.

I'm happy to get along without this doctrine. However I happen to know that it happens to be a huge "stumbling block" for many of my white Protestant friends (whom I hope to convert.)

Then they need to adjust their thinking, because the Church will not adjust its teaching to accommodate their baggage.

And are white Protestants less inclined to accept the Church's teaching on the Theotokos than Protestants of other backgrounds?  What's up with the random racial qualifier?

Besides that though, if we accept her ever-sinlessness, why not just be Catholic and be done with it?

Because we didn't get our teaching on the Mother of God from the Catholics.  We're just not obsessed with proving that they're idolatrous non-Christians like some whackjob Protestants.
I'm with the camp of 13 million Americans that believe politicians are, or are controlled by, Reptilians. I think only monks can solve this problem. It doesn't seem right that they prefer to ignore it.

Offline WPM

  • Protokentarchos
  • *********
  • Posts: 4,969
I don't know because I can't really tell.

Although I remember some Coptic photos of the priest lifting the communion cup over the head during Liturgy.
The Sign and Prayers to the Blessed Virgin Mary

Offline minasoliman

  • Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
  • Section Moderator
  • Stratopedarches
  • *****
  • Posts: 20,196
  • Pray for me St. Severus
  • Faith: Oriental Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: Coptic
Who's being cryptic?

Who hasn't sinned?

This is another topic, but how is she the "prototype", if indeed she was without sin, according to the tradition?

Food for thought.

When you are uncomfortable with the idea of sinlessness, you are pretty much saying that even by the grace of God, you will still sin.  You may not have explicitly denied it, but you are implicitly, and you seem to make no effort to yourself to better yourself and give yourself a new perspective in your spirituality.

Rather than concentrate on converting others, concentrate seeking God to convert you.

As for "prototype", read up on Irenaeus.
« Last Edit: January 25, 2017, 03:10:37 PM by minasoliman »
Vain existence can never exist, for "unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain." (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike
Our teaching is that she never committed personal sins.  That is to say, she never chose to sin, and she was able to do this by the grace of God. 

You are citing one clause in Romans as evidence to the contrary.  One clause in a much bigger argument that even people of sound mind often find hard to follow. 

You're going to need to do better.

Here is the Mor Ephrem we all know and love!
You could have shut my mouth a long time ago with that. I practically asked the very same question. Jimminy Cricket!
I'll at least consider that.
« Last Edit: January 25, 2017, 05:13:57 PM by mcarmichael »
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike
And are white Protestants less inclined to accept the Church's teaching on the Theotokos than Protestants of other backgrounds?  What's up with the random racial qualifier?

No comment.
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike

Where it says "For all have sinned, and fall short of the glory of God", it is apparent that Christ is the exception to the rule.

How is it apparent?  "All" is "all", right? 

You know this one, Mor. The Orthodox wrote the book on this one.

« Last Edit: January 25, 2017, 06:54:14 PM by mcarmichael »
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline Mor Ephrem

  • A highly skilled and trained Freudian feminist slut
  • Section Moderator
  • Hypatos
  • *****
  • Posts: 34,710
    • OrthodoxChristianity.net
  • Faith: Mercenary Freudianism
  • Jurisdiction: Texas Feminist Coptic

Where it says "For all have sinned, and fall short of the glory of God", it is apparent that Christ is the exception to the rule.

How is it apparent?  "All" is "all", right? 

You know this one, Mor. The Orthodox wrote the book on this one.

We agree that I know.  We don't agree that you know. 

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike
You know this one, Mor. The Orthodox wrote the book on this one.

We agree that I know.  We don't agree that you know.

Stay classy, Mor.
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline RaphaCam

  • Taxiarches
  • **********
  • Posts: 7,056
  • It is honourable to reveal the works of God
    • Em Espírito e em Verdade
  • Faith: Big-O Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: Exarchate of Gotham City
Where it says "For all have sinned, and fall short of the glory of God", it is apparent that Christ is the exception to the rule.
How have aborted 1-week foetuses sinned? St. Paul isn't using syllogistical "all", this is rhaetorical "all".
« Last Edit: January 25, 2017, 08:02:18 PM by RaphaCam »
"May the Lord our God remember in His kingdom all Holy Catholic Apostolic Church, which heralds the Word of Truth and fearlessly offers and distributes the Holy Oblation despite human deficiencies and persecutions moved by the powers of this world, in all time and unto the ages of ages."

May the Blessed Light shine Forth

Offline Antonious Nikolas

  • Orthodox Christian, Miaphysite
  • Taxiarches
  • **********
  • Posts: 7,237
  • Saint Nicholas the Wonderworker, Bishop of Myra
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Oriental Orthodox Church
And are white Protestants less inclined to accept the Church's teaching on the Theotokos than Protestants of other backgrounds?  What's up with the random racial qualifier?

No comment.

Don't throw stuff like that out there if you're not willing to elaborate.  Why are you singling out white Protestants?  How are they more theologically predisposed to reject the Orthodox Church's teaching on the Theotokos than, say, black Protestants?
I'm with the camp of 13 million Americans that believe politicians are, or are controlled by, Reptilians. I think only monks can solve this problem. It doesn't seem right that they prefer to ignore it.

Offline RaphaCam

  • Taxiarches
  • **********
  • Posts: 7,056
  • It is honourable to reveal the works of God
    • Em Espírito e em Verdade
  • Faith: Big-O Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: Exarchate of Gotham City
I think it was really just a random racial qualifier.
« Last Edit: January 25, 2017, 08:43:43 PM by RaphaCam »
"May the Lord our God remember in His kingdom all Holy Catholic Apostolic Church, which heralds the Word of Truth and fearlessly offers and distributes the Holy Oblation despite human deficiencies and persecutions moved by the powers of this world, in all time and unto the ages of ages."

May the Blessed Light shine Forth

Offline Antonious Nikolas

  • Orthodox Christian, Miaphysite
  • Taxiarches
  • **********
  • Posts: 7,237
  • Saint Nicholas the Wonderworker, Bishop of Myra
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Oriental Orthodox Church
I think it was really just a randomracial qualifier.

He's a big boy.  He can answer for himself.
I'm with the camp of 13 million Americans that believe politicians are, or are controlled by, Reptilians. I think only monks can solve this problem. It doesn't seem right that they prefer to ignore it.

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike
And are white Protestants less inclined to accept the Church's teaching on the Theotokos than Protestants of other backgrounds?  What's up with the random racial qualifier?

No comment.

Don't throw stuff like that out there if you're not willing to elaborate.  Why are you singling out white Protestants?  How are they more theologically predisposed to reject the Orthodox Church's teaching on the Theotokos than, say, black Protestants?

It tickled me, to do so. I was equally tickled when you called me out on it.
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike
So, you guys like Patristics, right? So while we're talking about it, how do you handle this commentary by St. John Chrysostom?

"For where parents cause no impediment or hindrance in things belonging to God, it is our bounden duty to give way to them, and there is great danger in not doing so; but when they require anything unseasonably, and cause hindrance in any spiritual matter, it is unsafe to obey. And therefore He answered thus in this place, and again elsewhere, "Who is My mother, and who are My brethren?" (Matt. 11,48), because they did not yet think rightly of Him; and she, because she had borne Him, claimed, according to the custom of other mothers, to direct Him in all things, when she ought to have reverenced and worshiped Him. This then was the reason why He answered as He did on that occassion....And so this was a reason why He rebuked her on that occasion, saying, "Woman, what have I to do with thee?" instructing her for the future not to do the like; because, though He was careful to honor His mother, yet He cared much for the salvation of her soul." (Homilies on the Gospel According to St. John, 21)
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline minasoliman

  • Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
  • Section Moderator
  • Stratopedarches
  • *****
  • Posts: 20,196
  • Pray for me St. Severus
  • Faith: Oriental Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: Coptic
Simple...we compare what he says to other commentaries
Vain existence can never exist, for "unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain." (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.

Offline Antonious Nikolas

  • Orthodox Christian, Miaphysite
  • Taxiarches
  • **********
  • Posts: 7,237
  • Saint Nicholas the Wonderworker, Bishop of Myra
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Oriental Orthodox Church
And are white Protestants less inclined to accept the Church's teaching on the Theotokos than Protestants of other backgrounds?  What's up with the random racial qualifier?

No comment.

Don't throw stuff like that out there if you're not willing to elaborate.  Why are you singling out white Protestants?  How are they more theologically predisposed to reject the Orthodox Church's teaching on the Theotokos than, say, black Protestants?

It tickled me, to do so. I was equally tickled when you called me out on it.

What a capricious and strange thing to do and attitude to take.  Good luck with life.
I'm with the camp of 13 million Americans that believe politicians are, or are controlled by, Reptilians. I think only monks can solve this problem. It doesn't seem right that they prefer to ignore it.

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike
What a capricious and strange thing to do and attitude to take.  Good luck with life.
Why are you angry?
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline Antonious Nikolas

  • Orthodox Christian, Miaphysite
  • Taxiarches
  • **********
  • Posts: 7,237
  • Saint Nicholas the Wonderworker, Bishop of Myra
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Oriental Orthodox Church
What a capricious and strange thing to do and attitude to take.  Good luck with life.
Why are you angry?

I'm not angry.  I just think your statement was a strange one and that your explanation as to why you made it was stranger still.  I'd truly like to know why you felt the need to mention white Protestants specifically.  How are they more theologically predisposed to reject the Orthodox Church's teaching on the Theotokos than, say, black Protestants?
I'm with the camp of 13 million Americans that believe politicians are, or are controlled by, Reptilians. I think only monks can solve this problem. It doesn't seem right that they prefer to ignore it.

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike
I'm not angry.  I just think your statement was a strange one and that your explanation as to why you made it was stranger still.
I guess I just don't get out of the house much, that's all.
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline Antonious Nikolas

  • Orthodox Christian, Miaphysite
  • Taxiarches
  • **********
  • Posts: 7,237
  • Saint Nicholas the Wonderworker, Bishop of Myra
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Oriental Orthodox Church
I'm not angry.  I just think your statement was a strange one and that your explanation as to why you made it was stranger still.
I guess I just don't get out of the house much, that's all.

It's always sunny in Philadelphia.
I'm with the camp of 13 million Americans that believe politicians are, or are controlled by, Reptilians. I think only monks can solve this problem. It doesn't seem right that they prefer to ignore it.

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike
It's always sunny in Philadelphia.
I'm in enough trouble already.
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline Antonious Nikolas

  • Orthodox Christian, Miaphysite
  • Taxiarches
  • **********
  • Posts: 7,237
  • Saint Nicholas the Wonderworker, Bishop of Myra
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Oriental Orthodox Church
It's always sunny in Philadelphia.
I'm in enough trouble already.

I hope you get out of trouble soon.
I'm with the camp of 13 million Americans that believe politicians are, or are controlled by, Reptilians. I think only monks can solve this problem. It doesn't seem right that they prefer to ignore it.

Offline RaphaCam

  • Taxiarches
  • **********
  • Posts: 7,056
  • It is honourable to reveal the works of God
    • Em Espírito e em Verdade
  • Faith: Big-O Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: Exarchate of Gotham City
"May the Lord our God remember in His kingdom all Holy Catholic Apostolic Church, which heralds the Word of Truth and fearlessly offers and distributes the Holy Oblation despite human deficiencies and persecutions moved by the powers of this world, in all time and unto the ages of ages."

May the Blessed Light shine Forth

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike
Simple...we compare what he says to other commentaries
If somehow it were determined that two patristic sources somehow disagreed with one another, is there any mechanism whereby a matter might be resolved?
Would the Pope's word be sufficient to resolve it, for example??
« Last Edit: January 30, 2017, 12:58:29 PM by mcarmichael »
"Use the force." - Yoda

Offline minasoliman

  • Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
  • Section Moderator
  • Stratopedarches
  • *****
  • Posts: 20,196
  • Pray for me St. Severus
  • Faith: Oriental Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: Coptic

Actually St. John Chrysostom tells us that the "likeness of the transgression of Adam" describes the reigning of death, not those who had not sinned.  That phrase is all on its own without any descriptions.

Wait one second. Isn't it also true that St. John Chrysostom also suggested that she may have sinned, in his commentary on John?

"For where parents cause no impediment or hindrance in things belonging to God, it is our bounden duty to give way to them, and there is great danger in not doing so; but when they require anything unseasonably, and cause hindrance in any spiritual matter, it is unsafe to obey. And therefore He answered thus in this place, and again elsewhere, "Who is My mother, and who are My brethren?" (Matt. 11,48), because they did not yet think rightly of Him; and she, because she had borne Him, claimed, according to the custom of other mothers, to direct Him in all things, when she ought to have reverenced and worshiped Him. This then was the reason why He answered as He did on that occassion....And so this was a reason why He rebuked her on that occasion, saying, "Woman, what have I to do with thee?" instructing her for the future not to do the like; because, though He was careful to honor His mother, yet He cared much for the salvation of her soul." (Homilies on the Gospel According to St. John, 21)

I'm feeling more Orthodox already.

I wanted to touch a little on this because in reading his homily in context, I think we are reading Chrysostom wrong when we assume "Mary sinned".  There is nothing in the 21st or the 22nd homilies indicating that Chrysostom believed Mary sinned.

I will grant you this:  He is perhaps the only Church father I know of who thinks of this as a mistake in her part to ask for something vain like this.  Nevertheless, Chrysostom also showed that Christ, being that this is His mother, preserved her honor and obeyed her, even addressed her honorably.  Therefore, even he will concede that Christ honored her at the wedding in Cana.  So the use of the word "woman" is also an honorable phrase.

She simply did something inappropriate in the context of His ministry, but she did not sin.  St. John Chrysostom wrote:

For where parents cause no impediment or hindrance in things belonging to God, it is our bounden duty to give way to them, and there is great danger in not doing so; but when they require anything unseasonably, and cause hindrance in any spiritual matter, it is unsafe to obey.

If then in the end of all of this, Christ obeyed her, then her commands "caused no impediment or hindrance to things belonging to God."  Instead, Chrysostom seems to point out a few things in this event with regards to the Theotokos' mistakes:

1.  Chrysostom writes "perhaps she wanted to be more conspicuous".  So here Chrysostom admits speculation of a certain noticeability, but this is not evident, and certainly he did not accuse her of vainglory.  For now, Christ has disciples and has been given great witness by St. John the Baptist.  This is a woman who also witnessed the greatness of Christ through the virgin birth, a birth she pondered about all her life.  So when Christ has started to become more public, she wanted to introduce Christ, but Christ did not think this was the place and time.  So Chrysostom speculates later in the homily on account of ignorance as evident in the next few explanations by Chrysostom.

2.  She is rightfully His mother, but in comparison to His divinity, Christ is Her Lord.  Therefore, while her commands are sinless, and Christ honored and obeyed her, the spirit of the commands came from a sense of describing her connection to His humanity, and not the connection to His divinity.  She has always reared Him as a great and honorable mother.  Now that Christ has begun His ministry, she needs to learn how to honor His Lordship.

3.  Chrysostom continues to mention another reason for Christ's rebuke.  He gives an analogy.  Suppose a physician comes in to heal all people, and wants to use his skills to those who need it.  But instead, His mother is directing him to heal certain privileged people.  Others would not be very pleased.  Hence the rebuke.  In fact, if you continue to read into the 22nd Homily, Chrysostom rewords Christ's words into something more palatable:

Therefore He says, "Mine hour is not yet come"; that is, "I am not yet known to the company, nor are they even aware that the wine has failed; let them first be sensible of this. I ought not to have been told it from you; you are My mother, and renderest the miracle suspicious. They who wanted the wine should have come and besought Me, not that I need this, but that they might with an entire assent accept the miracle. For one who knows that he is in need, is very grateful when he obtains assistance; but one who has not a sense of his need, will never have a plain and clear sense of the benefit."


So it seems Chrysostom is saying that Christ wanted to gently correct her ignorance, not her sins.  In fact, Chrysostom even gives a side commentary on Luke 11:27 in the same 21st homily you quoted:

These then were the words, not of one speaking rudely to his mother, but belonging to a wise dispensation, which brought her into a right frame of mind, and provided that the miracles should be attended with that honor which was meet. And setting other things aside, this very appearance which these words have of having been spoken chidingly, is amply enough to show that He held her in high honor, for by His displeasure He showed that He reverenced her greatly; in what manner, we will say in the next discourse.

Think of this then, and when you hear a certain woman saying, "Blessed is the womb that bare You, and the paps which You have sucked", and Him answering, "rather blessed are they that do the will of my Father" (Luke 11:27), suppose that those other words also were said with the same intention. For the answer was not that of one rejecting his mother, but of One who would show that her having borne Him would have nothing availed her, had she not been very good and faithful. Now if, setting aside the excellence of her soul, it profited Mary nothing that the Christ was born of her, much less will it be able to avail us to have a father or a brother, or a child of virtuous and noble disposition, if we ourselves be far removed from his virtue. "A brother", says David, "does not redeem, shall man redeem?" (Psalm 49:7, Septuagint) We must place our hopes of salvation in nothing else, but only in our own righteous deeds (done) after the grace of God. For if this by itself could have availed, it would have availed the Jews, (for Christ was their kinsman according to the flesh,) it would have availed the town in which He was born, it would have availed His brethren. But as long as His brethren cared not for themselves, the honor of their kindred availed them nothing, but they were condemned with the rest of the world, and then only were approved, when they shone by their own virtue; and the city fell, and was burnt, having gained nothing from this; and His kinsmen according to the flesh were slaughtered and perished very miserably, having gained nothing towards being saved from their relationship to Him, because they had not the defense of virtue. The Apostles, on the contrary, appeared greater than any, because they followed the true and excellent way of gaining relationship with Him, that by obedience. And from this we learn that we have always need of faith, and a life shining and bright, since this alone will have power to save us. For though His relations were for a long time everywhere held in honor, being called the Lord's kinsmen, yet now we do not even know their names, while the lives and names of the Apostles are everywhere celebrated.


You know what this tells me?  It doesn't tell me that Mary sinned.  It tells me that Christ reframed her state of mind into something grander, and she quickly did in fact reframe her state of mind.  Chrysostom just called the state of her soul "excellent".  He also said that when the woman cried out, "blessed is the womb that bore you and blessed is the paps which fed you," He replied to her IMPLYING that Mary was chosen because she was an excellent soul who does His Father's will!  He was raised as an obedient child to a righteous mother.  If all His life, His thirty years of life before baptism of John He obeyed His mother, that means there was not ONE THING His mother did wrong in making commands to Her own Son!

And let's follow a logical question here.  If Mary committed a sin in commanding Christ, and Christ obeyed her, would that not make Christ complicit in her sin!  God forbid!  No!  Instead, He increased her wisdom, because spiritual growth does not end with sinlessness, but continues "from glory to glory" (2 Corinthians 3:18).  As Chrysostom continues in the 22nd homily:

Why then after He had said, "Mine hour is not yet come", and given her a denial, did He what His mother desired? Chiefly it was, that they who opposed Him, and thought that He was subject to the hour, might have sufficient proof that He was subject to no hour; for had He been so, how could He, before the proper hour had come, have done what He did? And in the next place, He did it to honor His mother, that He might not seem entirely to contradict and shame her that bare Him in the presence of so many; and also, that He might not be thought to want power, for she brought the servants to Him.

Besides, even while saying to the Canaanitish woman, "It is not meet to take the children's bread, and to give it unto dogs" (Matthew 15:26), He still gave the bread, as considering her perseverance; and though after his first reply, He said, "I am not sent save unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel", yet even after saying this, He healed the woman's daughter. Hence we learn, that although we be unworthy, we often by perseverance make ourselves worthy to receive. And for this reason His mother remained by, and openly brought to Him the servants, that the request might be made by a greater number; and therefore she added,

"Whatsoever He says unto you, do it."

For she knew that His refusal proceeded not from want of power, but from humility, and that He might not seem without cause to hurry to the miracle; and therefore she brought the servants.


In other commentaries, the miracle of the wedding of Cana was a proof of her strong intercessions and His honor to her.  That is exactly what Chrysostom said, only with a veil, not explicitly.  But if you read in between the lines, Chrysostom actually shows the Theotokos to be sinless, but simply at a lower spiritual state, in which Christ gently raises her spiritual state.  We rarely ever hear of her again asking for miracles or bringing similar requests, which means she obeyed His words and continued to grow in perfection.  That proves her greatness, not her weakness.
« Last Edit: January 30, 2017, 08:32:29 PM by minasoliman »
Vain existence can never exist, for "unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain." (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.

Offline mcarmichael

  • Jedi Knight
  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,846
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Mike
Now I'm not sure what we are arguing about.

I was always taught "sin" is an archery term, meaning "to miss the mark". Not sure what the Greek etymology is, though. I assume it's the same, because I've heard that particular definition used so many times.

Now we're on the St. John Chrysostom bandwagon, and not really talking about the OP. Which is why I'm hesitant to pursue the topic here.

However, I don't care how you frame it, St. John Chrysostom does say that Christ rebukes her here. Which can only mean that she did something wrong. There's only one way to read that.

The question remains, why is someone (without naming any names) so seemingly desperate to prove otherwise? Which suggests to me that somebody hasn't been entirely honest with me (again without naming any names.)
« Last Edit: February 04, 2017, 02:16:56 AM by mcarmichael »
"Use the force." - Yoda