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Re: [LutheransLookingEast] The Papacy & Antichrist

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  • Christopher Orr
    Here s a little selection on the Orthodox view of Antichrist, generally: *The Antichrist Orthodox Perspective* Compiled By Archimandrite Nektarios Serfes
    Message 1 of 5 , Aug 8, 2008
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      Here's a little selection on the Orthodox view of Antichrist, generally:

      *The Antichrist Orthodox Perspective*
      Compiled By Archimandrite Nektarios Serfes
      Boise, Idaho
      October 1999
      In The Name Of The Father,
      The Son,
      The Holy Spirit
      *"The Antichrist can come only as a result of universal Apostasy, that is,*
      *the abjuration of the people from God and His paths,* *when God's grace
      withdraw from the people.* (Archpriest Boris Molchanoff) Introduction by
      Father Demetrios Serfes:

      *"Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God that in due time
      he may exalt you. Cast all your anxieties on him, for he cares about you.
      Be sober, be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a
      roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith." *(In
      the 1st Holy Epistle of the Apostle Peter 5:6-9).

      Here the Holy Apostle Peter urges us to humble ourselves beneath the strong
      hand of God, so that he can lift us up in the appropriate time -- urging us
      to not be concerned for earthly things, but to throw the care of our lives
      onto God, Who is our provider.

      *We are currently living in Apocalyptic times!

      Nothing on this earth is so important as Orthodox Christians to up hold the
      faith in which we ourselves where humbly baptized. Nothing is so important
      spiritually for us all to pray, pray, pray, and pray, but at the same time
      to be watchful in regards towards the path of our salvation.
      Another important spiritual factor is that we must be great warriors and
      confessors of our Holy Orthodox Faith, as were the divine Holy Fathers, the
      Saints, the Martyrs, and Ascetics of our Sacred and Holy Church. Then again
      we must be also defenders of the early seven Ecumenical Councils and lesser
      councils, as included in the doctrines of our pious faith. Finally we must
      be aware of the Apostasy that is surrounding us on a daily basis, and be
      spiritually prepared to suffer in our struggles to be witnesses of our
      faith. What can we ourselves do to avoid Apostasy? "*Get to know it,
      protect yourself from it and that is enough for you. Get to know the spirit
      of the times, study it so that you can avoid its influence whenever possible
      *", wrote the humble Bishop Igantius.

      In the loving truth of our Holy Orthodox Christian Faith, we ourselves are "
      *experiencing a terrible time, a time such as has never before been seen in
      the history of Christianity, in the history of mankind*! A time of almost
      total instability!" Thus wrote the humble Archbishop Averky of blessed
      memory. Without a doubt we have heard about the constant flow now of
      persecution of our Faith in almost every part of the world, and in general
      all Christian faiths. Many of us have heard that others are not living up
      the pure and unadulterated Holy Orthodox Christian faith, that we have those
      who feel that righteousness on their part is far better then giving guidance
      and expressing this faith in a truthful way of life. We hear of accusations
      of heresy and are called heretics! We have among us those who now believe
      that black is white, and white is black!

      We are for sure seeing the neglect of the sufferings and the needs of
      others, as we turn our heads and hearts to the means of our worldly life.
      We ourselves notice that the world is now turning away from God and is even
      beginning to fall into apostasy. We feel that we must step into the times,
      and to deal with it as we stray away and leave Christ our Lord out of our
      lives, and the loving teachings of His Holy and Sacred Church. We become the
      sole interpreters of Holy Scripture and neglect our spiritual lives, and the
      way to avoid this is to turn to the Holy Fathers of our Church, as we cannot
      speak about Holy Scriptures without them as we only stray from the holiness
      and purity of the meaning. We notice that children are killing children,
      parents killing children, and children killing parents, crime is at our door
      steps of innocent people. War is at the door and rumors or more wars, as
      well as earthquakes are increasing, as even our weather is out of control,
      and the melting down of our hemisphere, and our earnest neglect of our
      environment the creation of our Lord God. Morals now mean nothing is the new
      philosophy. Nuclear power and nuclear energy become an excuse for us to save
      money and money becomes power in it's neglect for the poor and starving

      We ourselves as Orthodox Christians certainly have several responsiblities
      in this humble regards in our preparations for the Antichrist and the last
      days on this earth, we simply have an obligation which are placed upon us!

      We must look to our spiritual Fathers of the Church and stay close to the
      Holy Orthodox Church and faith that we confess and believe. We can protect
      ourselves from the current Apostasy, and we must defend ourselves against
      the corrupting spirit of the times to avoid its influence.

      *If someone is teaching you outside of the things which the holy catholic
      Church received from the Holy Apostles, Fathers and Synods and preserved up
      till now, do not listen to him..., close your ears." *(St. John Damascene)

      Then again we as Orthodox Christians must return towards the path of
      righteous faith, as well as fully spiritually participate in it with all our
      minds, hearts, and souls. I would like humbly to make the following
      suggestions to you that would help all of us be most faithful Orthodox and
      pious Christians as we all ourselves struggle for our salvation and that we
      will indeed have a good and great defense before the great judgement seat of
      our Christ our Lord:

      1). Participate in loving prayer of the Divine Services of your parish
      Church, attend frequently Vespers, Matins, and the Holy Divine Liturgy, and
      when the Church calls you for further prayer.

      2). Prepare yourself to go frequently to Holy Confession with your local
      parish priest, and read the prayers before Holy Communion, and give Thanks
      to our Lord God afterwards.

      3). Live up to the prescibed fasting rules during the weekdays as we fast on
      both Wednesdays, and Fridays, as well as of midnight the night before the
      Holy Divine Liturgy. In addition follow the fasting periods in which the
      Orthodox Church has offered. We fast for forty days in preparation for the
      birth of our Lord, we fast for forty days for our Lord's Holy Resurrection,
      we fast for a period of time for the Apostles, and for the Mother of God for
      fifteeen days. Follow your Orthodox Church calendar in this regards to note
      when you should fast, and when you are free from fasting.

      4). Acquire to understand fully the teachings of our Holy Orthodox Faith
      from the teachings of the Holy Apostles, and the early Holy Fathers of the
      Church, and live within these guidelines to defend and share with others
      this loving faith. Seek out those who lived and struggled a most ascetical
      life and who have given us guidelines on the path towards our salvation.
      Find out what would the Holy Fathers say about the life of our Church, and
      about the issues we face from day to day. It's spiritually impossible to
      live a full Orthodox life without the Holy Fathers of our Church. Learn who
      they were, how humbly they lived, and what they taught us!

      5). Learn about the lives of the saints of our Church, as well as the holy
      martyrs, and the ascetics of our faith. Read as frequently as possible
      (almost daily) about these lives, as a means of spiritual guidance for you
      and a means for you to follow their loving example for us all!

      6). Study the teachings of the early Seven Ecumenical Councils, and the
      lesser councils, as to what has been expressed and taught to us about the
      teachings about our Saviour Jesus Christ, both His divine and human nature,
      as well as the teachings of the Mother of God. Learn how these Ecumenical
      councils developed the guide lines on the books of Holy Scripture, and the
      Nicene Creed we confess, and other teachings of our Church.

      7). Do your morning and evening prayers as a family, and on an individual
      basis daily! Pray to our Lord God during the day as well. Find time for
      yourself to pray frequently and often. Learn about prayer and seek it out
      so that you can find God! Seek out the teachings of the "Jesus Prayer",
      also known as the "Prayer of the heart", seek guidance from not only the
      many rich spiritual texts we have available, but also seek out more
      information from your spiritual father, or have him suggest further guidance
      for you. Make prostrations to the floor frequently, and afterwards stay on
      the floor with tears in prayer for others who need our prayers, pray as did
      St. Seraphim of Sarov before your holy icons, and lift up your hands to the
      heavens as did the Holy Prophet and God-Seerer Moses, and other saints. Take
      a ride by yourself and go to the mountains to find even more private time
      for prayer and behold the spiritual beauty of our God.
      Or take a walk by yourself through the woods and pray. Do this often as
      possible. Weep in your prayers, and learn about tears, keep your head bowed
      down and fold your hands cross wise in humility before our Lord God. Fold
      your hands to pray, pray, and pray.

      8). Find time within your busy day to try to learn more about your faith
      and search out the many books now available that can quide you on the right
      path of your Holy Orthodox Christian faith. Read humbly about those who have
      confessed our faith, and lived it daily, read frequently about the lives of
      the Saints and you will be spiritually rewarded. Know the life of your
      loving patron saint, and be an expert in this regards to tell others about
      this precious God-loving life and good works. Share this information with
      others, and teach your children about the faith in a childlike manner.

      9). Know that the Ten Commandments are important for us to live and to
      follow. Read what the Holy Fathers had written about these Ten Commandments
      and seek from an Orthodox point of view their meanings for not only yourself
      but also for your beloved children.

      10). Pick up and read Holy Scriptures daily, and struggle to read both the
      Old and New Testament and the books of the Apochraphal.

      11). Make a pilgrimage to either an Orthodox monastery or a convent. Make a
      serious decision to visit the Holy Land, or to go to Holy Mt. Athos. When
      you travel make plans to visit the local Orthodox Church's and monasteries
      in the area, and call the monastery and parish that you would like to stop
      and pray.

      12). Seek out the teachings of our faith about the virtues and the teachings
      that lead you on your path towards salvation, in both seeking your salvation
      on a daily basis and living your faith as a good example. Seek truth, and
      learn that truth will guide towards your salvation. Remember humbly truth is
      bitter, but it's truth! Have hope, and above all have faith in our Lord God
      and Saviour Jesus Christ. Remember to endure, and learn more about
      endurance, as did the lives of the Holy Martyrs of our loving Church.

      13). Love your children, respect your parents, and be honorable to your
      relatives, as well as your Godparents. Love your neighbor and care for their
      needs. Judge no one, and let our Lord God take care of this for all you have
      to do is pray for those in desperate need of your loving prayers.

      14). Forgive, forgive, forgive and learn how to forgive!

      15). Struggle, struggle, and struggle with love for God and His Church!

      16). Roar like a lion, but be mostly meek as a lamb!

      17). Pray for the living, and pray for the departed in the Lord! Keep list
      of these names, and bring it often to the priest to pray with you.

      18). Seek to be saintly and prepare yourself spiritually. Love peace and
      seek spiritually inner peace with our Lord Jesus Christ. When war is at our
      door step and destruction, cry out for peace, peace, and never cease in this
      regards in spite of what might seem a failure at that time. Keep knocking on
      the door for peace again and again!

      19). Love God and love one another! Love your faith and live your faith!
      Know your faith, and share your faith with others, as well as defend it and
      speak of it's truths. Once again I repeat truth is bitter, but it's truth.
      Christ our Lord is truth, and Holy Orthodoxy is the same truth.

      20). Learn about the inner peace of our Lord God and live for this peace.

      21). Live the pious Christian life of Beatitude! Remember almost by heart
      in remembrance of these spiritually rewarding Beatitudes. "Blessed are the
      meek...." Learn to be meek also.

      22). Feed the homeless and help the homeless in any way to get on their feet
      to lead a productive life. Learn that your responsibility is not to convert
      them, but to live a true Christian life. Reach out in caring for others when
      they ask for your help. Be a volunteer, and do it with Christian love and
      expect no reward. The poor and most unfortunate need food, a warm blanket,
      and shelter, as well as your love, give one of your blankets away, give some
      of your extra food to someone else, and suggest where one can find shelter
      and assist in this on a temporary basis. Pray for them and do not cry out
      that it's their fault, as being poor is a horrific struggle to be what all
      human beings desire to get back on their feet once again. Aren't we all
      ourselves at the door step at times in being homeless? Afterwards do not
      seek any rewards, and deny you did anything before man, as our Lord God will
      reward you most humbly. Help sponsor a dinner in your local parish and
      remember to when it's Wednesday or Friday prepare fasting foods. When it's
      not a fasting day remember that those who are homeless and hungry do not eat
      as often as yourself.

      23). Avoid pride and be humble!

      24). Do nothing for honor, and when you are caught doing something good
      express the following: It's all for the Glory of our God! Or say: Glory be
      to God for all things!

      25). Pray for all and judge no one, leave that up to God!

      26). When you pray learn to weep in these humble prayers with all your mind,
      heart, and soul!

      27). Struggle and learn to struggle more!

      28). Look for Christ our Lord in others, and speak from the heart to the
      heart before you!

      29). Seek to cleanse your sins, and weep before our Lord God that you desire
      not to sin in the same manner again.

      30). Pick up your Cross, and then pick it up again!

      31). When you are ill seek out your parish priest to anoint you with the
      gift of the Holy Spirit that was performed on Holy Wednesday at the Holy
      Unction services.

      32). Be forbearing always!

      33). Listen to the truth as it might at times seem bitter to you.

      34). Learn about the Creed we confess during the Divine Services and in your
      daily prayers, seek to fully understand the Creed, and learn that it's a
      confession of our Holy Orthodox Faith and it's teachings. If anyone ask you
      about our faith refer to this Creed frequently.

      35). Establish icon corners and places for your holy icons in your home.
      Keep a vigil light burning fervently before your loving icons, and take oil
      from it anointing yourself and your beloved children.

      36). Respect your environment and plant a tree, and put flowers in the
      ground and see the beauty of our Lord God and His creation. Give room for
      nature to dwell, as we desire to dwell on this earth in humble preparations
      for the Kingdom of our Lord God.

      37). Have your house blessed by your parish priest every year.

      38). Go to Holy Confession and ask your local parish priest guidelines in
      preparation for this Holy Mystery.

      39). Lean that Holy Marriage is a blessing from God and constantly keep
      telling each other of your respected love, and learn to talk to each other,
      as well as the members of your family, and let Christ our Lord reign in your
      home and hearts. Pray together, and go to Church together, and struggle

      40). Give always Glory, Honor, and Worship to God to the Most Holy Trinity,
      One in Essence, and Undivided - the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,
      now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen!

      *"The Church of Christ is not comprised of the many, but of those who keep
      the correct and saving confession of faith, even if they are few" *(St.
      Theodore Studite)

      As you have read some of the spiritual guide lines indicated, all of us can
      follow some other means and suggestions that can as well be most piously
      helpful to you, by turning to the "Ladder of Divine Ascent", or the
      "Philokalia", the teachings of the "Holy Fathers", and "Holy Scripture".
      Forgive me in being neglectful, but I am giving you some guide lines, as a
      means for us all to begin to realize we must spiritually prepare ourselves,
      and not be neglectful. We can do this with the love for our God and His
      Church in knowing that we can accomplish more then we actually think, and
      all of this is done with prayer, prayer, prayer, and more prayer. All of us
      can do it with the help of our Loving Lord God, and with the guidance of our
      spiritual father. What really prepares us is up to us all, and what really
      gives us hope is without a doubt faith, faith, and more faith. Pray and love
      to pray, hope and learn about hope, and live in faith and in having more
      joyful faith in our Lord God who loves us all! Seek the mercy and the inner
      peace of God! Fight the good fight within yourself to cleanse your sins, and
      always guard yourself to sin no more...

      Now I would like to humbly touch upon you about the "Antichrist"* *from an
      Orthodox perspective, and in doing so I of course desire that you
      spiritually awaken yourself and fully understand that this presentation is
      to help you in giving you fuller awareness and preparations. Does this
      simply mean that the world itself will end in the year 2000? We do not know
      as only our Lord God knows this answer, as we even know that even the Holy
      Angels do not have an answer for us. What we need to do spiritually is again
      I repeat, be aware, prepare and learn about the teachings of our Holy
      Orthodox Faith for the sake of our humble salvation. The following was
      written by a Russian Orthodox priest named Father Boris Molchanoff, and this
      particular presentation is taken from the book "The Mystery Of Iniquity And
      The Antichrist".

      The Antichrist
      by Archpriest Father Boris Molchanoff The Lord Jesus Christ said, *"....I
      will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against
      it." *(St.
      Matthew 16:18). What do the gates of hell signify?

      The Jews had the custom of gathering under the leadership of their elders,
      by the city gates, for the discussion of political, legal and social
      questions. These meetings were the last appeal of all litigation, and here
      all divine commandments were announced. They were vested with a definite
      authority among the people. This Jewish custom of meeting at the city gates
      is mentioned in the Book of Ruth (IV:1,11). A description of an active wife
      in the Book of Proverbs (31: 23) says that, *"Her husband is known in the
      gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land." *He is invested with
      the trust of society and takes an active part in important meetings. (Prof.
      V.V. Bolotoff).

      The "gates" of hell" signifies not only the forces of hell, but in general
      staff of Hell's power. Their most important meeting is dedicated to
      developing a plan for a general battle with the Church. The Church and Hell
      are represented as two warring powers. And in this war with Hell, according
      to Christ's words, the Church will remain invincible.

      Hell's war plan with the Church is called the "Mystery of Iniquity" in the
      Holy Scriptures (2 Thessalonians 2:8). The iniquity has been working for
      centuries and will have its culmination in the appearance of the Antichrist
      ( 2 Thessalonians 2:8). *The Antichrist can come only as a result of
      universal Apostasy, that is, the abjuration of the people from God and His
      paths, when God's grace will withdraw from the people*.

      *"And in the latter times of their kingdom, when the transgressors are come
      to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences,
      shall stand up." *(Daniel 8:23)

      *"Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and
      signs and lying wonders...." *(2 Thessalonians 2:9)
      All of the evil in its fullest strength which human nature can accept and
      endure will be concentrated in the person of the Antichrist. Thousands of
      years were required to develop and perfect the kind of human seed that was
      required to receive the purest most perfect Fruit of the human tree in the
      person of the Most Blessed Virgin. Comparably, for the appearance of the
      most depraved fruit, capable of containing within itself all Satanic malice,
      an entire line of human generations will be demanded in the direction of
      greatest corruption and defilement of human nature, based upon mad hatred
      towards Christ and war against His Church. "It can be admitted," says Pro.
      Belyaeff, "that innate and acquired evil, gradually accumulating in a long
      line of ancestors of the Antichrist, transmitted with each new generation,
      will reach such a degree of force in the Antichrist himself, which human
      nature is capable of containing, revealing and enduring. The evil which
      lives in mankind, will reach the highest limit of its development in him." (
      *Godlessness And The Antichrist*, Vol. 1. p. 193).

      Of course, to the degree that evil strengthens in man's will, diabolic
      activity within man will increase also, as the devil thus receives greater
      access to man's soul. Inasmuch as the Antichrist's personal evil will and
      its corruption will reach the limit of its greatest growth, the relationship
      of the devil to him will reach the limit of maximum nearness, which will be
      expressed in the devil himself continuously acting in the person of the
      Antichrist, "God", says St. John of Damascus, "Foreseeing future depravity
      of his will (the Antichrist's) will allow the devil to inhabit him." ("The
      Exact Exposition Of The Orthodox Faith", Book IV, Chapter 26) St. Cyril of
      Jerusalem teaches the same. (Teaching, V. 14). St. Andrew of Kessary says
      that the Antichrist "will come out of the gloomiest and remotest lands of
      the earth to which the devil is banished." (Interpretation of the 11th
      chapter of the Apocalypse, 30th chapter.) Blessed Theodore writes, "Man's
      enemy, clothed in human nature, God's adversary, the demon, usurping God's
      Name, will appear in the world before Christ's coming." ("An Exact
      Exposition Of Divine Dogma", chapter 23, printed in "Christian Readings",
      1844, Chapter IV, page 355.) Laktancy, Gezihy of Jerusalem and Blessed
      Heronim, call the Antichrist the son of Satan.

      In agreement with such teachings of the Holy Fathers, the life of the
      Antichrist cannot admit one moment free from satanic action. It must
      already appear in the very birth and even in his conception, peculiar and
      exceptional in its depravity. "From a defiled virgin will actually be born
      his (the devil's) weapon." says St. Ephrem the Syrian. This is also
      confirmed by St. John of Damascus. "A man (the Antichrist) will be born
      from fornication."

      The Holy Fathers Iriney ("Against Heresy", Book V, chapter 30), Ippolit
      (Legends about Christ and the Antichrist), and also Ilariy, Ambrose, Ieronim
      and Augustus, remark that the Antichrist will be of Jewish ancestry, from
      the tribe of Dan.

      In the Synaksare, stated in the Week of Lent without meat, we read that,
      "The Antichrist will come and be born, as St. Ippolit of Rome declares, from
      a depraved wife and self-styled virgin, which is from the Jews, from the
      tribe of Dan." (Lenten Triod) Such indications in God's Word have several

      1. In the prophecies of Patriarch Jacob about each of his sons becoming
      the progenitors of the tribes of Israel, the fate of Dan's ancestors is
      depicted in such a way that can only be ascribed to theAntichrist. "Dan
      shall be a serpent on the way, an adder in the path..." (Genesis 49, 17)
      2. In the prophecies of Ierenim: "From Dan himself...(Ierenim VIII,16)

      3. In the prophecies of the Apocalypse, enumerating the remainder of
      all the tribes of Israel, marked by the Angel for salvation, the tribe of
      Dan is absolutely excluded. (Revelations VII, 4-8).

      According to the teachings of the Holy Fathers, the devil, exalting the
      Antichrist, will try to vest his coming with all the signs of the coming of
      the Son of God to earth. (See St. Cyril of Jerusalem, the 150th catechistic
      word; St. Ephrem the Syrian, the 39th word, in the Russian translation
      Blessed Theodore, "A Short Exposition of Divine Dogma", Chapter 23, St.
      Ippolit, "The Legends of Christ and the Antichrist")

      Of course, some resemblance of the Antichrist to Christ will only be
      external and in essence deceitful, for the whole life and all the deeds of
      the Antichrist will be an incensed and blasphemous revolt against Christ and
      His Church. This false external resemblance to Christ will appear in the
      very birth of the Antichrist. Keeping in mind that Christ was born a
      Virgin, the devil will produce his weapon from a virgin, not from a pure
      virgin, however, but from one filled with every vice and satanic filth.
      Then, as the Lord until he was thirty years old remained in obscurity, so
      the Antichrist, we assume, will, until the age of 30, remain in clandestine
      solitude and obscurity. As Christ began His saving service with sermons of
      His Divine teaching and miracles, so will the Antichrist begin his
      completely destructive service with the delusion of the people with his
      false teaching and incredibly shameful, deceitful miracles. As it was
      pleasing for the Lord to reveal Himself to all the people as the Messiah by
      solemnly entering Jerusalem and into its Temple, so the Antichrist will
      reveal himself as the false Jewish Messiah, the international monarch, in
      him solemn ceremonial entrance into Jerusalem and his enthronement in the
      temple of Jerusalem, which will by that time be restored.

      The Lord's entry into Jerusalem, says Archbishop Innokenty of Herson, was
      "for all Jews a national declaration that Jesus Christ was veritably the
      Messiah. Indisputable proof of this are His own words, proclaimed before
      the gates of Jerusalem, saying: "If thou hadst known, even now, at least in
      this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace: But now they are hid
      from thine eyes." (Luke XIX, 42.) "With this day, with the rejection of
      the Messiah, the fate of the Israelite nation was decided for eternity."
      (The Last Days on Earth of Jesus Christ")

      On the day when the Antichrist shall enter into Jerusalem as the false
      Messiah, forever and irrevocably the fate of his contemporaries will be
      decided. Blessed are those who, on the last day given by God for the
      conclusive self-determination of the people, will see the Antichrist as
      Satan's servant and the inescapable peril of all mankind which recognized
      him. Finally, as the Lord revealed Himself to the world and fulfilled His
      service as a Prophet, as King and as High Priest, so will the Antichrist
      concentrate all this triple power in his hands and complete his destructive
      service as the teacher of all mankind, as the monarch of an international
      monarchy and as the highest primate of all religions, demanding reverence
      for himself as God.

      The entire life and activity of the Antichrist may be examined in three

      The *FIRST PERIOD* of the Antichrist from the day of birth to the
      moment of his social
      appearance will pass in clandestine obscurity. St. John of Damascus
      says that,
      "Antichrist will be raised secretly." (The Exact Exposition of the
      Orthodox Faith", Book
      IV, Chapter 26.)

      The *SECOND PERIOD* of the Antichrist's life will be opened by his
      thunderous entry (on
      the world stage - my addition) in the role of a universal teacher or
      "prophet". It is very
      possible that he will begin his activity during a world war, when
      people, enduring all its
      horrors, will not see any way out of the calamitous dead end. All
      the concealed levers for
      the solution will be in the hands of a secret society assisting the

      The Antichrist will offer the most successful project for solving the world
      crisis from the perspective of political and social wisdom, which would
      establish a uniform political and social order in the whole world.
      Exhausted from the shock of war, spiritually blinded humanity will not only
      by unaware that this project is a cowardly trap, enticing it into the most
      degrading and merciless slavery, but on the contrary, will recognize it as a
      manifestation of scholarship and genius.

      Universal advertisement about the Antichrist as a brilliant thinker, new
      leader, and savior of mankind, will thunder over all nations in the shortest
      possible period of time. "Evil spirits dispersed in the universe, will
      awaken a general, inflated opinion about the Antichrist in man, a general
      enthusiasm and an irresistible attraction for him." (St. Ephraim the
      Syrian, 16th word.)

      In this period of his activity, the Antichrist will not use any force and
      will try to win men's trust and affection with his deceitful and
      hypocritical public mask of virtue. He, according to the expression of
      Vladimir Soloviev, "will throw a gleaming veil of kindness and truth over
      the mystery of iniquity." "He will come," said St. Ephrem the Syrian, "in
      an image which will seduce everyone. He will come as a humble, kind, hater
      of falsehood (as he will say about himself), rejecting idols, preferring
      piety and kindness, loving the poor, bearing extremely handsome features,
      constant, sweet to everyone, respecting especially the Jewish nation because
      they will be awaiting his coming...He will take sly measures to please
      everyone, will not accept gifts nor speak in anger, will not show an
      overcast countenance, but will entice the world with a decorous exterior
      until he is enthroned." (See previous citation.)

      From the great wealth of ascetical experience from our great men of podvig,
      it is known that when the black devil cannot overcome an ascetic,
      encountering unswerving opposition from him, a stronger devil comes as an
      "angel of light" (II Corinthians, XI, 14), attempting to awaken sympathy and
      trust towards himself in the ascetic, and easily charming him away to
      destruction. Thus, we can imagine how easily and quickly the bright image
      of the Antichrist will attract general sympathy towards itself after the
      filthy devil of Bolshevism.

      As a result of such deceit, "the need to invite the Antichrist will arise"
      within the very temperament of man's spirit. "A beckoning voice will
      resound in man's society, expressing urgent need for a genius of geniuses,
      who would raise material development and prosperity to the highest degree
      and establish affluence on earth". (Bishop Ignatius Brianchaninoff. Vol
      IV, page 313.)

      The hypocrisy of the Antichrist in this period will reach the point that he,
      even in his relationship to Christians, will not oppose them, but will
      appear ready to be their benefactor. He will try to imitate Christ in the
      external, showy side of his life. The majority of Christians, not guided by
      the spiritual wisdom of the Church, but by worldly wisdom, will not see this
      deceit, recognizing the Antichrist as Christ who has come to earth a second
      time. The monks of the Solovetsky monastery pass on the answer given by
      Righteous Zosima to his disciples when he was asked how the Antichrist could
      be recognized. Righteous Zosima said, "When you will hear that Christ has
      appeared on earth, know then that this is the Antichrist." This answer is
      most precise. "The world or mankind will not recognize the Antichrist, it
      will recognize him as Christ, it will proclaim him Christ.....

      ("Antichrist", by Very Reverend Boris Moltchanoff published in 1976, by
      Archpriest George Grabbe, Department of Foregin Relations Synod of Bishops,
      New York., pp. 1-4.)

      Through Prayers Of Our Holy Fathers,
      Lord Jesus Christ Son Of God,
      Have Mercy On Us And Save Us!

      *Glory Be To God For All Things!*

      On Fri, Aug 8, 2008 at 2:55 PM, jfowl100 <jfowl100@...> wrote:

      > The Lutheran Confessions teach that the Papacy is the antichrist.
      > Would the Orthodox agree with the various arguments presented in the
      > Confessions about why the Papacy is antichrist?

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Christopher Orr
      One will also hear some Orthodox refer to ecumenism and freemasonry as the religions of Antichrist. This is not necessarily mainstream, and it is also not a
      Message 2 of 5 , Aug 8, 2008
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        One will also hear some Orthodox refer to ecumenism and freemasonry as the
        religions of Antichrist. This is not necessarily mainstream, and it is also
        not a typical subject of sermons in Orthodoxy. It is more common in
        Orthodox societies facing significant challenges - they are more
        'apocalyptic'. Many Russians under and that fled from atheistic Communism,
        many Serbs that feel innocently besieged on all sides, etc.

        Here is another little selection on Antichrist from "Charismatic Revival as
        a Sign of the Times" by the late Fr. Seraphim Rose:

        > ...The strange "Christian" spirit of the "charismatic revival" is clearly
        > identified in the Holy Scriptures and the Orthodox patristic tradition.
        > According to these sources, world history will culminate in an almost
        > superhuman "Christian" figure, the false messiah or *antichrist.* He will
        > be "Christian" in the sense that his whole function and his very being will
        > center on Christ, Whom he will imitate in every respect possible, and he
        > will be not merely the greatest enemy of Christ, but in order to deceive
        > Christians will *appear** *to be Christ, come to earth for a second time
        > and ruling from the restored Temple in Jerusalem.
        > Let no one deceive you by any means, for that day shall not come except
        > there come a falling away (apostasy) first, and that man of sin be revealed,
        > the son of perdition, who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is
        > called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple
        > of God, showing himself that he is God... even him whose coming is after the
        > working of satan with all lying wonders, and with all deceivableness in them
        > that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they
        > might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that
        > they should believe a lie: that they all might be damned who believed not
        > the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness (2 Thess. 2:3-4, 9-12).
        > The Orthodox teaching concerning antichrist is a large subject in itself
        > and cannot be presented here. But if, as the followers of the "charismatic
        > revival" believe, the last days are indeed at hand, it is of crucial
        > importance for the Orthodox Christian to be informed of this teaching
        > concerning one who, as the Saviour Himself has told us, together with the
        > "false prophets" of that time, shall show great signs and wonders, insomuch
        > that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect (Matt. 24:24).
        > And the "elect" are certainly not those multitudes of people who are coming
        > to accept the gross and most unscriptural delusion that "the world is on the
        > threshold of a great spiritual awakening," but rather the "little flock" to
        > which alone our Saviour has promised: It is your Father's good pleasure to
        > give you the Kingdom (Luke 12:32). Even the true "elect" will be sorely
        > tempted by the "great signs and wonders" ofantichrist; but most "Christians"
        > will accept him without any question, for his "New Christianity" is
        > precisely what they seek.
        > *"Jesus is Coming Soon"*
        > JUST IN THE PAST FEW YEARS, significantly, the figure of "Jesus" has been
        > thrust into strange prominence in America. On stage and in films
        > long-standing prohibitions against portraying the person of Christ have been
        > abrogated. Sensationally popular musicals present blasphemous parodies of
        > His life. The "Jesus Movement," which was largely "charismatic" in
        > orientation, spread spectacularly among teenagers and young people. The
        > crudest form of American popular music is "Christianized" at mass
        > "Jesus-Rock Festivals," and "Christian" tunes for the first time in the
        > century become the most popular in the land. And underlying this whole
        > strange conglomeration of sacrilege and absolutely unenlightened worldliness
        > is the constantly reiterated expression of seemingly everyone's expectation
        > and hope: *Jesus is coming soon.*
        > The careful observer of the contemporary religious scene - especially in
        > America, where the most popular religious currents have originated for over
        > a century - cannot fail to notice a very decided air of chiliastic
        > expectation. And this is not only true of "charismatic" circles, but even of
        > the traditionalist or fundamentalist circles that have rejected the
        > "charismatic revival." Thus, many traditionalist Roman Catholics believe in
        > the coming of a chiliastic "Age of Mary" before the end of the world, and
        > this is only one variant on the more widespread Latin error of trying to
        > "sanctify the world," or, as Archbishop Thomas Connolly of Seattle expressed
        > it [as] "transforming the modern world into the Kingdom of God in
        > preparation for His return." Protestant evangelists such as Billy Graham, in
        > their mistaken private interpretation of the Apocalypse, await the
        > "millennium" when "Christ" will reign on earth. Other evangelists in Israel
        > find that their millenarian interpretation of the "Messiah" is just what is
        > needed to "prepare" the Jews for his coming [17]. And the
        > arch-fundamentalist Carl McIntire prepares to build a life-size replica of
        > the Temple of Jerusalem in Florida (near Disneyworld!), believing that the
        > time is at hand when the Jews will build the very "Temple to which the Lord
        > Himself will return as He promised" (*Christian Beacon* , Nov. 11, 1971;
        > Jan. 6, 1972).
        > Thus, even anti-ecumenists find it possible to prepare to join the
        > unrepentant Jews in welcoming the false messiah - antichrist - in contrast
        > to the faithful remnant of Jews who will accept Christ as the Orthodox
        > Church preaches Him, when the Prophet Elijah returns to earth.
        > It is therefore no great consolation for a sober Orthodox Christian who
        > knows the Scriptural prophecies concerning the last days, when he is told by
        > a "charismatic" Protestant minister that, "It's glorious what Jesus can do
        > when we open up to Him. No wonder people of all faiths are now able to pray
        > together" (Harold Bredesen, in *Logos Journal *, Jan.-Feb., 1972, p. 24);
        > or by a Catholic Pentecostal that the members of all the denominations now
        > "begin to peer over those walls of separation only to recognize in each
        > other the image of Jesus Christ" (Kevin Ranaghan in *Logos Journal *,
        > Nov.-Dec., 1971, p. 21). Which "Christ" is this for whom an accelerated
        > program of psychological and even physical preparation is now being made
        > throughout the world? - Is this our true God and Saviour Jesus Christ, Who
        > founded the Church wherein men may find salvation? Or is it *the false
        > Christ who *will *come in his own name *(John 5:43) and unite all who
        > reject or pervert the teaching of the one Church of Christ, the Orthodox
        > Church?
        > Our Saviour Himself has warned us: *"Then if any man shall say unto you,
        > Lo, here is the Christ, or there; believe it not. For there shall arise
        > false Christs, and false prophets, and shall show signs and wonders, so as
        > to lead astray, if possible, even the elect. Behold I have told you
        > beforehand. If therefore they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the
        > wilderness, go not forth; Behold, he is in the inner chambers, believe it
        > not. For as the lightning cometh forth from the east, and is seen even unto
        > the west, so shall be the coming of the Son of man"* (Matt. 24:23-27).
        > The Second Coming of Christ will be unmistakable: it will be sudden, from
        > heaven (Acts 1:11), and it will mark the end of this world. There can be no
        > "preparation" for it - save only the Orthodox Christian preparation of
        > repentance, spiritual life, and watchfulness. Those who are "preparing" for
        > it in any other way, who say that he is anywhere "here" - especially "here"
        > in the Temple of Jerusalem - or who preach that "Jesus is coming soon"
        > without warning of the great deception that is to precede His Coming: are
        > clearly the prophets ofantichrist , the false Christ who must come first and
        > deceive the world, including all "Christians" who are not or do not become
        > truly Orthodox. There is to be no future "millennium." For those who can
        > receive it, the "millennium" of the Apocalypse (Apoc. 20:6) is now; the life
        > of grace in the Orthodox Church for the whole "thousand years" between the
        > First Coming of Christ and the time ofantichrist [18]. That Protestants
        > should expect the "millennium" in the future is only their confession that
        > they do not live in it in the present - that is, that they are outside the
        > Church of Christ and have not tasted of Divine grace.
        > *Must Orthodoxy *
        > *Join the Apostasy?*
        > IT IS TRUE ENOUGH, to be sure, that an Orthodox awakening would be much to
        > be desired in our days, when many Orthodox Christians have lost the salt of
        > true Christianity, and the true and fervent Orthodox Christian life is
        > indeed rarely to be seen. Modern life has become too comfortable; worldly
        > life has become too attractive; for too many, Orthodoxy has become simply a
        > matter of membership in a church organization or the "correct" fulfillment
        > of external rites and practices. There would be need enough for a *true *Orthodox
        > spiritual awakening, but this is not what we see in the Orthodox
        > "charismatics." Just like the "charismatic" activists among Protestants and
        > Roman Catholics, they are fully in harmony with the spirit of the times;
        > they are not in living contact with the sources of the Orthodox spiritual
        > tradition, preferring the currently fashionable Protestant techniques of
        > revivalism. They are one with the leading current of today's apostate
        > "Christianity": the ecumenical movement.
        > There have been true Orthodox "awakenings" in the past: one thinks
        > immediately of St. Cosmas of Aitolia, who walked from village to village in
        > 18th-century Greece and inspired the people to return to the true
        > Christianity of their ancestors; or St. John of Kronstadt in our own
        > century, who brought the age-old message of Orthodox spiritual life to the
        > urban masses of Petersburg. Then there are the Orthodox monastic instructors
        > who were truly "Spirit-filled" and left their teaching to the monastics as
        > well as the laymen of the latter times: one thinks of the Greek St. Symeon
        > the New Theologian in the 10th century, and the Russian St.Seraphim of Sarov
        > in the 19th. St. Symeon is badly misused by the Orthodox "charismatics" (he
        > was speaking of a Spirit different from theirs!); and St.Seraphim is
        > invariably quoted out of context in order to minimize his emphasis on the
        > necessity to belong to the Orthodox Church to have a true spiritual life. In
        > the "Conversation" of St.Seraphim with the layman Motovilov on the
        > "acquisition of the Holy Spirit" (which the Orthodox "charismatics" quote
        > *without *the parts here italicized), this great Saint tells us: "The
        > grace of the Holy Spirit which was given to us all, the faithful of Christ,
        > in the Sacrament of Holy Baptism, is sealed by the Sacrament of Chrismation
        > on the chief parts of the body, as appointed *by the Holy Church, *the
        > eternal keeper of this grace." And again: "The Lord listens equally to the
        > monk and the simple Christian layman,* provided that both are Orthodox.*"
        > As opposed to the true Orthodox spiritual life, the "charismatic revival"
        > is only *the experiential side of the prevailing "ecumenical" fashion - *a
        > counterfeit Christianity that betrays Christ and His Church. No Orthodox
        > "charismatic" could possibly object to the coming "Union" with those very
        > Protestants and Roman Catholics with whom, as the interdenominational
        > "charismatic" song goes, they are already "one in the Spirit, one in the
        > Lord," and who have led them and inspired their "charismatic" experience.
        > The "spirit" that has inspired the "charismatic revival" is the *spirit of
        > antichrist *, or more precisely those "spirits of devils" of the last
        > times whose "miracles" prepare the world for the false messiah.
        > *"Little Children, *
        > *it is the Last Hour" (1 John 2:18)*
        > Outside of genuine Orthodoxy the darkness... grows. Judging from the latest
        > "religious" news, the "charismatic revival" may well be only the faint
        > beginning of a whole "age of miracles." Many Protestants who have discerned
        > the fraud of the "charismatic revival" now accept as "the real thing" the
        > spectacular "revival" in Indonesia where, we are told, there are *really *occurring
        > "the self same things that one finds reported in the Acts of the Apostles."
        > In the space of three years 200,000 pagans have been converted to
        > Protestantism under constantly miraculous conditions: No one does anything
        > except in absolute obedience to "voices" and "angels" who are constantly
        > appearing, usually quoting Scripture by number and verse; water is turned
        > into wine every time the Protestant communion service comes around; detached
        > hands appear from nowhere to distribute miraculous food to the hungry; a
        > whole band of demons is seen to abandon a pagan village because a "more
        > powerful" one ("Jesus") has come to take their place; "Christians" have a
        > "countdown" for an unrepentant sinner, and when they come to "zero" he dies;
        > children are taught new Protestant hymns by voices that come from nowhere
        > (and repeat the song twenty times so the children will remember); "God's
        > tape-recorder" records the song of a children¹s choir and plays it back in
        > the air for the astonished children; fire comes down from the sky to consume
        > Catholic religious images ("the Lord" in Indonesia is very anti-Catholic);
        > 30,000 have been healed; "Christ" appears in the sky and "falls" on people
        > in order to heal them; people are miraculously transported from place to
        > place and walk on water; lights accompany evangelists and guide them at
        > night, and clouds follow them and give them shelter during the day: the dead
        > are raised [19].
        > Interestingly, in some parts of the Indonesian "revival" the element of
        > "speaking in tongues" is almost totally absent and is even forbidden
        > (although it is present in many places), and the element of mediumism seems
        > sometimes to be replaced by a direct intervention of fallen spirits. It may
        > well be that this new "revival," more powerful than Pentecostalism, is a
        > more developed stage of the same "spiritual" phenomenon (just as
        > Pentecostalism itself is more advanced than spiritism) and heralds the
        > imminence of the dreadful day when, as the "voices" and "angels" in
        > Indonesia also proclaim, "the Lord" is to come - for we know thatantichrist
        > will prove to the world that he is "Christ" by just such "miracles."
        > In an age of almost universal darkness and deception, when for most
        > "Christians" *Christ *has become precisely what Orthodox teaching means by
        > *antichrist, *the Orthodox Church of Christ alone possesses and
        > communicates the grace of God. This is a priceless treasure the very
        > existence of which is not so much as suspected even by the "Christian"
        > world. The "Christian" world, indeed, joins hands with the forces of
        > darkness in order to seduce the faithful of the Church of Christ, blindly
        > trusting that the "name of Jesus" will save them even in their apostasy and
        > blasphemy, mindless of the fearful warning of the Lord: *"Many will say to
        > Me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Thy name? and in Thy
        > name have cast out devils? and in Thy name done many wonderful works? And
        > then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from Me, ye that
        > work iniquity" *(Matt. 7:22-23).
        > St. Paul continues his warning about the coming of antichrist with this
        > command: *"Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which
        > ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle" *(2 Thess. 2:15).*"There be some that trouble you, and would pervert the Gospel of Christ. But
        > though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than
        > that which we have preached unto you, let him be anathema. As we said
        > before, so say I now again: If any preach any other gospel unto you than
        > that ye have received, let him be anathema"* (Gal. 1:8-9).
        > The Orthodox answer to every new "revival," and even to the final terrible
        > "revival" of antichrist, is this Gospel of Christ, which the Orthodox Church
        > alone has preserved unchanged in an unbroken line from Christ and His
        > Apostles, and the grace of the Holy Spirit which the Orthodox Church alone
        > communicates, and only to her faithful children, who have received in
        > Chrismation, and kept, the *true seal of the gift of the Holy Spirit. *
        > Amen.
        > *The Religion of the Future*
        > IT IS DEEPLY INDICATIVE of the spiritual state of contemporary mankind that
        > the "charismatic" and "meditation" experiences are taking root among
        > "Christians." An Eastern religious influence is undeniably at work in such
        > "Christians," but it is only as a result of something much more fundamental:
        > the loss of the very feeling and savor of Christianity, due to which
        > something so alien to Christianity as Eastern "meditation" can take hold of
        > "Christian" souls.
        > The life of self-centeredness and self-satisfaction lived by most of
        > today's "Christians" is so all-pervading that it effectively seals them off
        > from any understanding at all of spiritual life; and when such people do
        > undertake "spiritual life," it is only as another form of self-satisfaction.
        > This can be seen quite clearly in the totally false religious ideal both of
        > the "charismatic" movement and the various forms of "Christian meditation":
        > all of them promise (and give very quickly) an experience of "contentment"
        > and "peace." But this is not the Christian ideal at all, which if anything
        > may be summed up as a fierce battle and struggle. The "contentment" and
        > "peace" described in these contemporary "spiritual" movements are quite
        > manifestly the product of spiritual deception, of spiritual
        > self-satisfaction - which is the absolute death of the God-oriented
        > spiritual life. All these forms of "Christian meditation" operate solely on
        > the psychic level and have nothing whatever in common with Christian
        > spirituality. Christian spirituality is formed in the arduous struggle to
        > acquire the eternal Kingdom of Heaven, which fully begins only with the
        > dissolution of this temporal world, and the true Christian struggler never
        > finds repose even in the foretastes of eternal blessedness which might be
        > vouchsafed to him in this life; but the Eastern religions, to which the
        > Kingdom of Heaven has not been revealed, strive only to acquire psychic
        > states which begin and end in this life.
        > In our age of apostasy preceding the manifestation of antichrist, the devil
        > has been loosed for a time (Apoc. 20:7) to work the false miracles which he
        > could not work during the "thousand years" of Grace in the Church of Christ
        > (Apoc. 20:3), and to gather in his hellish harvest of those souls who
        > "received not the love of the truth" (2 Thess. 2:10). We can tell that the
        > time ofantichrist is truly near by the very fact that this satanic harvest
        > is now being reaped not merely among the pagan peoples, who have not heard
        > of Christ, but even more among "Christians" who have lost the savor of
        > Christianity. It is of the very nature ofantichrist to present the kingdom
        > of the devil * as if it were of Christ. *The present-day "charismatic"
        > movement and "Christian meditation," and the "new religious consciousness"
        > of which they are part, are forerunners of the* religion of the future,
        > the religion of the last humanity, the religion of antichrist,** *and
        > their chief "spiritual" function *is to make available to Christians the
        > demonic initiation hitherto restricted to the pagan world.** *Let it be
        > that these "religious experiments" are still often of a tentative and
        > groping nature, that there is in them at least as much psychic
        > self-deception as there is a genuinely demonic initiation rite; doubtless
        > not everyone who has successfully "meditated" or thinks he has received the
        > "Baptism of the Spirit" has actually received initiation into the kingdom of
        > satan. But this is the aim of these "experiments," and doubtless the
        > techniques of initiation will become ever more efficient as mankind becomes
        > prepared for them by the attitudes or passivity and openness to new
        > "religious experiences" which are inculcated by these movements....
        > http://www.fatheralexander.org/booklets/english/charismatic_revival_s_rose_e.htm


        On Fri, Aug 8, 2008 at 2:55 PM, jfowl100 <jfowl100@...> wrote:

        > The Lutheran Confessions teach that the Papacy is the antichrist.
        > Would the Orthodox agree with the various arguments presented in the
        > Confessions about why the Papacy is antichrist?

        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • randall hay
        I left Lutheranism for precisely this reason. LCMS pastors are required to subscribe to the Book of Concord, and the idea that the papacy (or pope ) is the
        Message 3 of 5 , Aug 8, 2008
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          I left Lutheranism for precisely this reason. LCMS pastors are required to subscribe to the Book of Concord, and the idea that the papacy (or "pope") is the Antichrist always struck me as poppycock.

          The papacy fell into errors, certainly; but that is something quite different from being the eschatological figure of evil. No father I've ever read says the papacy or pope is "the Antichrist." Popes don't set themselves up to "be God," or "deny the Gospel," which are the objections I recall from my old Lutheran seminary days.

          I like what the article someone else sent: instead of pointing fingers at this or that public figure as the Man of Lawlessness or worse, we should take heed to our own salvation.

          I'm not a supporter of Rome, which has been trying to take over Orthodoxy for centuries, but I don't think Luther's perspective in the matter is tenable.

          Subdeacon Randy

          ----- Original Message ----
          From: jfowl100 <jfowl100@...>
          To: LutheransLookingEast@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Friday, August 8, 2008 2:55:42 PM
          Subject: [LutheransLookingEast] The Papacy & Antichrist

          The Lutheran Confessions teach that the Papacy is the antichrist.
          Would the Orthodox agree with the various arguments presented in the
          Confessions about why the Papacy is antichrist?

          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Travis (Constantine) Stolz
          Luther s perspective cannot be removed from either his historcial or polemical context.  Neither Luther nor the Lutheran Symbols were the first to argue that
          Message 4 of 5 , Aug 9, 2008
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            Luther's perspective cannot be removed from either his historcial or polemical context.  Neither Luther nor the Lutheran Symbols were the first to argue that the pope is the Antichrist--read Bernard McGinn's study of the Antichrist, for example. 
            I, too, always had difficulty with how Luther and the Symbols argued.  The argument seemed to me very early on to be neither biblical nor patristic.

            Yours in Christ,
            Travis (Constantine)

            Travis (Constantine) Stolz

            --- On Sat, 8/9/08, randall hay <stortford@...> wrote:

            From: randall hay <stortford@...>
            Subject: Re: [LutheransLookingEast] The Papacy & Antichrist
            To: LutheransLookingEast@yahoogroups.com
            Date: Saturday, August 9, 2008, 1:29 AM

            I left Lutheranism for precisely this reason. LCMS pastors are required to subscribe to the Book of Concord, and the idea that the papacy (or "pope") is the Antichrist always struck me as poppycock.

            The papacy fell into errors, certainly; but that is something quite different from being the eschatological figure of evil. No father I've ever read says the papacy or pope is "the Antichrist." Popes don't set themselves up to "be God," or "deny the Gospel," which are the objections I recall from my old Lutheran seminary days.

            I like what the article someone else sent: instead of pointing fingers at this or that public figure as the Man of Lawlessness or worse, we should take heed to our own salvation.

            I'm not a supporter of Rome, which has been trying to take over Orthodoxy for centuries, but I don't think Luther's perspective in the matter is tenable.

            Subdeacon Randy

            ----- Original Message ----
            From: jfowl100 <jfowl100@yahoo. com>
            To: LutheransLookingEas t@yahoogroups. com
            Sent: Friday, August 8, 2008 2:55:42 PM
            Subject: [LutheransLookingEa st] The Papacy & Antichrist

            The Lutheran Confessions teach that the Papacy is the antichrist.
            Would the Orthodox agree with the various arguments presented in the
            Confessions about why the Papacy is antichrist?

            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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