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Re: "Gospel"

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  • randall hay
    Hi, guys. One recent topic that came up is the Orthodox definition of gospel. Our definition, obviously, is broader than the Lutheran. I came across this
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 14, 2008
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      Hi, guys. One recent topic that came up is the Orthodox definition of "gospel." Our definition, obviously, is broader than the Lutheran. I came across this one in St John Chrysostom recently that kind of struck me. He starts out commenting on why Matthew calls his history a "gospel," and gets into this:

      Matthew hath rightly called his work by a name which signifies �gospel." Yea, for it was the removal of punishment, and remission of sins, and �righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption,� and adoption, and an inheritance of Heaven, and a relationship unto the Son of God, which he came declaring unto all; to enemies, to the perverse, to them that were sitting in darkness. What then could ever be equal to these good tidings? God on earth, man in Heaven; and all became mingled together, angels joined the choirs of men, men had fellowship with the angels, and with the other powers above: and one might see the long war brought to an end, and reconciliation made between God and our nature, the devil brought to shame, demons in flight, death destroyed, Paradise opened, the curse blotted out, sin put out of the way, error driven off, truth returning, the word of godliness everywhere sown, and flourishing in its growth, the polity of those above
      planted on the earth, those powers in secure intercourse with us, and on earth angels continually haunting, and hope abundant touching things to come. (St John Chrysostom, Homily 1 on Matthew)





      ________________________________
      From: randall hay <stortford@...>
      To: LutheransLookingEast@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Saturday, December 13, 2008 11:42:52 PM
      Subject: Re: [LutheransLookingEast] Aerial Tollhouse in the Jordanville

      Glad my comments were helpful!

      I came across an interesting bit by St John Chrysostom on the role of angels, that I included in response to Rebecca....

      In Christ,

      R.





      ________________________________
      From: "phos_hilarion@..." <phos_hilarion@...>
      To: LLE <lutheranslookingeast@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Saturday, December 13, 2008 11:23:04 AM
      Subject: RE: [LutheransLookingEast] Aerial Tollhouse in the Jordanville


      Thank you very much. Your thoughts were very helpful. It is always good to see things from another's eyes. I am not as terribly bothered by toll houses now that I know they should be understood as a spiritual, figurative metaphor. I am glad that you shared the context in which Fr. Seraphim was writing - I can begin to understand where he was coming from in laying a heavy emphasis on the topic.

      Christopher, I don't know anything about the left and right within Orthodoxy. I did note that one of the main opponents is the former Archbishop Lazar of the OCA. But I also found a deacon who pretty fairly explains both sides and remains ambivalent as to his own thoughts, found here: http://www.stlukeorthodox.com/html/evangelist/2000/deathtoll.htm I have not yet come across or read anything written from ROCOR. I will look forward to reading the pages from Fr. Seraphim Rose.

      Pray for me.
      Love in Christ,
      phos

      To: LutheransLookingEast@yahoogroups.com
      From: stortford@...
      Date: Fri, 12 Dec 2008 21:16:40 -0800
      Subject: Re: [LutheransLookingEast] Aerial Tollhouse in the Jordanville




















      The "tollhouses" are a pretty minor part of Orthodoxy. Extremely rarely mentioned in the fathers. Fr Seraphim Rose brought it up in a big way, because in the 60's and 70's he was seeing all this stuff in the popular media about near-death experiences suggesting everyone goes to heaven, no matter how debauched your life and what you believe, which fit in with the general prevailing popular notions of relativism and seeing all religions as basically the same. He pointed out that, to the contrary, we are all really truly judged when we die, our lives are examined, and whether they were pleasing to God or the devil.



      As for the "aerial tollhouses" themselves (as the Jordanville Prayer Book has it), they seem to lend themselves to a figurative understanding, not something to be taken in a literal physical spacial sense.



      Yes, the angels play a role in executing God's justice, as Scripture informs us; but they only do what He commands (for the angels) or allows (the demons). The demons always accuse us, the angels, the "ministering spirits" come to our aid.



      This is why there isn't much in the fathers about the tollhouses; it's simply an elaboration on how the judgement of God takes place. I think it's good to know that the demons will indeed be accusing us....but we don't need to be concerned with wooden shacks and gates. Our souls aren't material in that way....and God is in control of it all. He doesn't allow any devils to sneak us off when He's not looking.



      I used to have a problem with the tollhouses, but once I began to see that the concept is more a figurative elaboration on what our minds can't really grasp, it didn't bother me.



      Hope this helps---



      R.



      ________________________________

      From: "phos_hilarion@..." <phos_hilarion@...>

      To: LLE <lutheranslookingeast@yahoogroups.com>

      Sent: Friday, December 12, 2008 6:12:49 PM

      Subject: [LutheransLookingEast] Aerial Tollhouse in the Jordanville



      Greetings all.



      I've prayed the Canon to the Guardian Angel - found on Myribiblios. net, if I remember rightly. Now that I have the Jordanville, I notice that it is mostly the same. However the last prayer is different in the Jordanville. What concerns me is this quote from the Jordanville: "when I shall pass through the aerial tollhouses". I know that aerial tollhouses are considered controversial in the Orthodox church. Some think it is within the tradition of the church while others say that it is gnostic and has no evidence or support in the Bible. So having already prayed a canon to the guardian angel where any hint of passing through toll houses was never present, I was surprised to find it in the Jordanville. If this topic is controversial, why is it in a common prayerbook?



      Please, any insight you can give in this matter would be helpful. I have already done some reading on the topic via Orthowiki and I'm inclined to disbelieve toll houses. What then about this prayer? Don't pray it? And I don't like the implications of that. Picking and choosing what one likes best is too much like current Lutheranism. I am fully aware that I may not be understanding this topic in it's correct light as, in the past, I have not perfectly understood every Orthodox thought on first examination.



      I am at a loss. Please enlighten me.



      Love in Christ,

      your little phos



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