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Re: Predestination

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  • mattyreader
    Hello, This is my first time posting anything, so forgive me if I mess anything up. Re Predestination/Election etc, readers may find useful Ben Witherington s
    Message 1 of 40 , Feb 10, 2010
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      Hello,
      This is my first time posting anything, so forgive me if I mess anything up.

      Re Predestination/Election etc, readers may find useful Ben Witherington's "The Problem with Evangelical Theology", which has a few detailed chapters on predestination/grace/election. He hits Calvinism pretty hard, Lutheranism to a degree, and while he is Protestant, his analysis of those topics seem to be rather Eastern.

      Also, the excellent work by Dr. Farrell, "Free Choice in St. Maximus the Confessor" is, if you can find it, a gem of a read on these topics.

      "Salvation in Christ: A Lutheran Orthodox Dialogue" addresses these issues, too. And you can find it for under a buck online.
      Yours in Him,
      Matt H.



      --- In LutheransLookingEast@yahoogroups.com, randall hay <stortford@...> wrote:
      >
      > Hi. I've been giving more thought to the role of free will in salvation, which was the biggest hurdle for me coming into Orthodoxy, and seems to be a biggee for many Lutherans. Are we completely depraved, dead in the water till He makes the first move?
      >
      > Yesterday I came across the clearest statement I've found, which seems to tie things up in wonderful patristic depth and clarity, including the concept of synergy. I've read this work--a classic since it was written in the 8th centure--twice before, but never noticed it (duh).
      >
      > FROM EXACT EXPOSITION OF THE ORTHODOX FAITH BY ST. JOHN OF DAMASCUS (+ 750)
      >
      > Bear in mind, too, that virtue is a gift from God implanted in our nature, and that He Himself is the source and cause of all good, and without His co-operation (Gk synergia) and help we cannot will or do any good thing. But we have it in our power either to abide in virtue and follow God, Who calls us into ways of virtue, or to stray from paths of virtue, which is to dwell in wickedness...
      > While then we abide in the natural state we abide in virtue, but when we deviate from the natural state...we come into an unnatural state and dwell in wickedness.
      > (II.30 [NPNF pp. 42-3; PG 44])
      >
      > +
      >
      > Thus, being able to incline in some slight way toward God of one's own free will isn't to claim one's own righteousness apart from God. GOD PUT THAT IN OUR NATURE. WE GET NO CREDIT. HE IS GOOD AND HE MADE US GOOD. Virtue is natural for His human creatures because He made us in His image. Sin is unnatural.
      >
      > Yes, we've bungled things to an extraordinary degree; and as St John points out here, we can't even will a good work, much less complete it, without Him. The ancestral curse afflicts us all, and we choose the unnatural and irrational life of sin throughout our lives.
      >
      > However, since He made us in His image to live a life of virtue, it's imperative that we do our best to do that.
      >
      > The New Testament is written in such a way to reflect this...the grace of God and our path (Law and Gospel, if you will) are constantly intermixed.
      >
      > Hope this helps---
      >
      > Subdeacon R.
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > ________________________________
      > _._,___
      >
      > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      >
    • mattyreader
      Hello, This is my first time posting anything, so forgive me if I mess anything up. Re Predestination/Election etc, readers may find useful Ben Witherington s
      Message 40 of 40 , Feb 10, 2010
      • 0 Attachment
        Hello,
        This is my first time posting anything, so forgive me if I mess anything up.

        Re Predestination/Election etc, readers may find useful Ben Witherington's "The Problem with Evangelical Theology", which has a few detailed chapters on predestination/grace/election. He hits Calvinism pretty hard, Lutheranism to a degree, and while he is Protestant, his analysis of those topics seem to be rather Eastern.

        Also, the excellent work by Dr. Farrell, "Free Choice in St. Maximus the Confessor" is, if you can find it, a gem of a read on these topics.

        "Salvation in Christ: A Lutheran Orthodox Dialogue" addresses these issues, too. And you can find it for under a buck online.
        Yours in Him,
        Matt H.



        --- In LutheransLookingEast@yahoogroups.com, randall hay <stortford@...> wrote:
        >
        > Hi. I've been giving more thought to the role of free will in salvation, which was the biggest hurdle for me coming into Orthodoxy, and seems to be a biggee for many Lutherans. Are we completely depraved, dead in the water till He makes the first move?
        >
        > Yesterday I came across the clearest statement I've found, which seems to tie things up in wonderful patristic depth and clarity, including the concept of synergy. I've read this work--a classic since it was written in the 8th centure--twice before, but never noticed it (duh).
        >
        > FROM EXACT EXPOSITION OF THE ORTHODOX FAITH BY ST. JOHN OF DAMASCUS (+ 750)
        >
        > Bear in mind, too, that virtue is a gift from God implanted in our nature, and that He Himself is the source and cause of all good, and without His co-operation (Gk synergia) and help we cannot will or do any good thing. But we have it in our power either to abide in virtue and follow God, Who calls us into ways of virtue, or to stray from paths of virtue, which is to dwell in wickedness...
        > While then we abide in the natural state we abide in virtue, but when we deviate from the natural state...we come into an unnatural state and dwell in wickedness.
        > (II.30 [NPNF pp. 42-3; PG 44])
        >
        > +
        >
        > Thus, being able to incline in some slight way toward God of one's own free will isn't to claim one's own righteousness apart from God. GOD PUT THAT IN OUR NATURE. WE GET NO CREDIT. HE IS GOOD AND HE MADE US GOOD. Virtue is natural for His human creatures because He made us in His image. Sin is unnatural.
        >
        > Yes, we've bungled things to an extraordinary degree; and as St John points out here, we can't even will a good work, much less complete it, without Him. The ancestral curse afflicts us all, and we choose the unnatural and irrational life of sin throughout our lives.
        >
        > However, since He made us in His image to live a life of virtue, it's imperative that we do our best to do that.
        >
        > The New Testament is written in such a way to reflect this...the grace of God and our path (Law and Gospel, if you will) are constantly intermixed.
        >
        > Hope this helps---
        >
        > Subdeacon R.
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        > ________________________________
        > _._,___
        >
        > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        >
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