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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, May 27 2019 1:16 PM

Hamilton Ramos:
that a more systematic way of helping develop the gifts the Holy Spirit bestows to believers is needed,

The Orthodox have demonstrated for two millennia that systematic methods are not needed. They do use spiritual friendship a.k.a. mentoring and do recognize that some things must be known before others can be learned, that some things can be dangerously misunderstood until one has "prepared the ground" for them. But until you understand that liturgy is participation in the heavenly, eternal, divine liturgy you will focus on the human initiative rather than the divine initiative. Please read the Tolstoy story "The Three Hermits". It illustrates perfectly why Orthodoxy does not worry about systematics but rather trusts God.

Logos has this applicable resource: Engraved Upon the Heart: Children, the Cognitively Challenged, and Liturgy’s Influence on Faith Formation by Hwarang Moon

Hamilton Ramos:
Problem is that different groups see its functions in varied ways.

You have asked about the Orthodox. In that context, there are no "different groups" with varying views of liturgy. The plethora of opinions on how to design human-made worship services is a Protestant issue and therefore not applicable here. To the best of my knowledge, while there are charismatic liturgies within the liturgical churches, I know of no Pentecostal or Charismatic denomination that is liturgical. Please correct me if I am wrong.

Paul F. Bradshaw's Two Ways of Praying (cathedral vs. monastic) might be useful for understanding some of the basic concepts. Or less fundamental, Logos has  Liturgy and Theology: Economy and Reality by Nathan G. Jennings from the Anglican perspective.

Hamilton Ramos:
In my higher studies (secular) I noticed that many times we needed to put together many different views from different experts to get to a coherent, very helpful whole of the topic at hand.

This is very true for intellectual understanding, including religious and theological topics. However, the primary focus of a Christian is to become Christ-like i.e. to work on oneself not to reach an intellectual understanding of what Christ-like is.

Hamilton Ramos:
And do you know if Orthodox groups split over Spiritual gifts cessation vs continuationism?

An Orthodox person would be more apt to question why the Church in the West split over the cessation vs continuationism of Tradition.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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SineNomine | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, May 28 2019 8:58 AM

From my Latin rite Catholic perspective, an absolutely necessary prologomenon to any real study of Orthodoxy or any aspect of it is attending Orthodox (or Eastern Catholic) liturgies, especially but definitely not exclusively the Divine Liturgy. The actual celebration of the liturgy is, to my mind, the first and greatest reference book for Eastern Christianity. (Of course, the liturgy is inexpressably more than a reference book.)

Readers of books on Eastern Orthodoxy will benefit tremendously from attending even one significant Eastern Christian liturgy before hitting the books.

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Hamilton Ramos | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, May 28 2019 2:39 PM

MJ: Thanks for the recommended resources.

Hope we are not considered discussing theology now.

1 Liturgy= public service in most traditions.

2 Holy Spirit gift identification and development: in certain charismatic / pentecostal groups, persons with gift of prophecy, gift of discernment of spirits, word of science, etc. Give many times direct input as to if someone is chosen by God to carry out a particular ministry / mission. 

IAW the information, ministry teams that can help out kick in to aid.

3 What I meant by in higher studies should have spearhead people facilitate the means and ways for new converts to start maturing and developing the gifts the H.S. bestowed them.

Most of the actual know how will come with experience in ministry and the growing presence, attunement and letting guide of the Holy Spirit. 

But if people do not know what the gifts are, what are they for, how they have been used historically, and what looms in the horizon for them, the process will be slowed down.

Jesus was clear: "teach them to obey", He does the rest of ripening and improving flow through connection to the vine is up to Him.

4 At least in Christopher version of Orthodox Christianity, they acknowledge that God can use for supernatural deployment any of the saints, as is the Holy Spirit the one that Rules.

Old heard story: Catholics seminarians in this country. Visit to the Hospital. One is so touched by the conditions of the patients, that he kneels and starts to pray asking for mercy to God. Some miracles start happening. What did the other seminarians do? Dude, what are you doing, you are not supposed to be doing that, you are not ordained.

Who in your view was following the right system (God's)? The concerned seminarian asking for mercy, or the gung ho institutional type believers that do not do anything (including God's work) unless permitted by an alleged authority (authoritarian)?

There are light years between God's true work and most institutionalized forms of religion, in case it has not been noticed.

Could the system be improved to focus on what is real important? I hope so.

Kind regards.

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, May 28 2019 3:36 PM

Hamilton Ramos:
1 Liturgy= public service in most traditions.

I use liturgy in a much narrower sense -- the sense used, for example, for Chupungco, Anscar J., ed. Introduction to the Liturgy. Handbook for Liturgical Studies. Collegeville, MN: The Liturgical Press, 1997. See "Liturgical Protestant and Non-Liturgical" on the web i.e. to me "liturgical" implies lectionary and service book and commonly some portion of the traditional communal prayers of the hours.

Hamilton Ramos:

Old heard story: Catholics seminarians in this country. Visit to the Hospital. One is so touched by the conditions of the patients, that he kneels and starts to pray asking for mercy to God. Some miracles start happening. What did the other seminarians do? Dude, what are you doing, you are not supposed to be doing that, you are not ordained.

Who in your view was following the right system (God's)? The concerned seminarian asking for mercy, or the gung ho institutional type believers that do not do anything (including God's work) unless permitted by an alleged authority (authoritarian)?

My view - the story is a bit of anti-Catholic BS based on a seriously misinformed understanding of the lay/ordained distinction and likely with malicious intent. The appropriate response is "when did you quit beating your wife?" or I could ask "How does this related to essential Orthodox references, the topic of this thread?"

Hamilton Ramos:
Hope we are not considered discussing theology now.

Yes, you have moved into theology. The real question at this point is "do you genuinely want to understand the Orthodox position on e.g. moral theology?" If the answer is yes, then you must put in the work to understand why the Orthodox position begins with an understanding of Orthodox liturgy. If you wish to start with systematics, you will never understand the Orthodox position and by implication, probably never really wanted to. I am very willing to point you to resources to help you understand the Orthodox position; I have no interest in arguing the position with you.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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Ken McGuire | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, May 28 2019 4:23 PM

SineNomine:
Readers of books on Eastern Orthodoxy will benefit tremendously from attending even one significant Eastern Christian liturgy before hitting the books.

This Lutheran would want to echo this as well. I understand how we Logos book lovers want a resource to explain everything, but from what I DO understand, they view things differently. I will not claim to understand it fully since I remain an outsider, but the best hints I have have been from attending their worship and talking with Orthodox about why they do some of the things they do.

The Gospel is not ... a "new law," on the contrary, ... a "new life." - William Julius Mann

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SineNomine | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 29 2019 5:47 AM

Hamilton Ramos:
Old heard story: Catholics seminarians in this country. Visit to the Hospital. One is so touched by the conditions of the patients, that he kneels and starts to pray asking for mercy to God. Some miracles start happening. What did the other seminarians do? Dude, what are you doing, you are not supposed to be doing that, you are not ordained.

The most relevant Logos/Verbum reference resource is the Catechism of the Catholic Church, which also provides readers a sense of how Catholics understand the Orthodox and Eastern Christianity more generally. The version for folks fond of using TL;DR is the Youth Catechism of the Catholic Church (YOUCAT). That's all I have to say on this matter within the bounds of the forum guidelines.

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Hamilton Ramos | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 29 2019 6:37 AM

MJ. Smith:
I use liturgy in a much narrower sense

Thanks for the clarification. Is funny that you reference Globalsecurity (I just think is hilarious). Did not see that coming from you. 

Note: Corinthians as master blaster gentile Church:

1 Co 14:24 But if all prophesy, and an unbeliever or outsider enters, he is convicted by all, he is called to account by all, 25 the secrets of his heart are disclosed, and so, falling on his face, he will worship God and declare that God is really among you. 

The original Church did have your kind of Liturgy. But what really made the difference was that resurrected Jesus was with them, the Holy Spirit kept disclosing what was wrong, becoming stumbling block for growth, the true values of a persons heart, the possibllities of a person to be a vessel for honorable use, etc.

And that is what made non-converts know that God was truly there.

Big difference. 

MJ. Smith:
My view - the story is a bit of anti-Catholic BS based on a seriously misinformed understanding of the lay/ordained distinction and likely with malicious intent. The appropriate response is "when did you quit beating your wife?" or I could ask "How does this related to essential Orthodox references, the topic of this thread?"

Not at all MJ, because that is the feeling that Catholic Charismatics have. Too much control from the institutionalized leaders, and too little display of the work of the Holy Spirit as shown in 1 Co 14:25.

You can reference all the Orthodox resources you want, but the key point was described in the link provided by Christopher:

Acquisition of the Holy Spirit is where it is at. As he also reported, all saints can be vessels for honorable use. And I may add, once the H.S. is acquired, then the gifts have to be put to use.

Those simple truths put all resources in proper perspectives.

The world is to eventually be filled with the Glory of God, and that includes His supernatural work also. He is in natural way always perfect, we are the ones living in a fallen area.

When He shows up, supernatural things are bound to happen, because He sets things aright for love of His children.

Note that in all my posts, I never push a denomination or group, I (like in the referred link to the article Christopher pointed), think that the acquisition of the Holy Spirit is of utmost importance because that is the second part of the mission Jesus came to do: to baptize us with the Holy Spirit to restore g:koinonia with the Father.

That is beyond tradition and groups. 

MJ. Smith:
the Orthodox position begins with an understanding of Orthodox liturgy. If you wish to start with systematics, you will never understand the Orthodox position and by implication, probably never really wanted to

Your opinion MJ. You cannot divorce Orthodox from the Apostle's doctrine.

Jewish pillars: Education (as they had Torah, all could potentially serve God).

Worship (by being in the applicable covenant, and staying within the limits of the moral order ingrained in the created order by God, you could be in the presence of God and be transformed (note how this relates to the gifts being operant as per 1 Co 14:25) the presence of God tells what is really going on, and what must be done.

Good deeds: teach others to obey Jesus, Apostle's doctrine, best practices, but without eschewing the supernatural. So preparing for service, and looking for the lost, while worshipping to grow in gifts to do the job God's way.

The Scripture cannot be broken, and any deviation from the prescribed way, is plain unfaithfulness to the Creator.

I have shown to you what the core of Orthodox is by the link that Christopher posted:

1050404.aspx

I check what you have to say and retain what is good according to their degree of jibing with the Scriptures. Anything that does not jibe I discard.

You are in all good faith sharing with me resources, I am in all good will trying to point out the underneath key spiritual principles behind it all.

Timothy Keller expressed something key about the experience of Jonathan Edwards (if you remember my post on that), most key work is done IAW the Bible, and working in the dimension of the Holy Spirit.

You quoted Sain Francis, and he also was against institutionalized red tape that many times it gets in the way of true work of God.

If the root cause of problems is not brought to the limelight, then how can real progress be made?

Is the forum about just consumerism (buying resources), or is it in the deep intent to expand the Kingdom of God in all of Earth.

If we comment on the more effective ways to do that (regardless of tradition), are we going against the spirit of the forum, or are we hitting it right in the nail head?

Kind regards.

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Hamilton Ramos | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 29 2019 6:50 AM

Thanks SineNomine.

I think both resources mentioned by you are great. Even better is Catholic topical index which lets a lot of resources to be combined smartly.

My problem is that even if Catholics have a long lasting tradition of Saints being used supernaturally and otherwise by God, why is not a more systematic way of helping the development of that area.

I understand epicospalism developed to counter the myriad of heresies developing, but in a way I would imagine that by fostering real deep spirituality (so that believers get closer to God), heresies would be countered better.

Saint Francis was not needed to be controlled tightly to a. point of asphyxiation, Yet he was an awesome child of God, we all can agree with that.

We need the sheep to be more like him (him in turn trying to be more like Jesus). So that is about God's love in humble and faithful service for the Kingdom of God, not an institution.

I think some institutional red tape is making the work deviate from the highway to enter auxiliary bad roads.

We all need to think hard on which system are we presently working and where is our allegiance.

Kind regards.

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Hamilton Ramos | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 29 2019 7:34 AM

Hi Ken:

I understand what you are trying to say. But then your post kind of illustrates what I am trying to convey to all:

To have a better idea of what is really going on, is not enough to read a book. Ideally if we meet the practitioners / sources then we can understand better.

Exactly my point: If we get the baptism of the Holy Spirit and have an encounter with God that way, we will understand better what He wants done and how. 

It is not enough to read the Bible, we need to be involved and take part in Jesus' second mission: baptize us with the Holy Spirit.

The church g:ekklesia was in real life the gathering of believers that had the Holy Spirit operant in their lives.

Now there is a misunderstanding that church is the Structure, with its traditions, authority lines, etc. When all that was just to facilitate being a fit aid to Jesus.

Jesus is the hope of the world, He is the savior.  Not the Church, the Church is just a fit aid of Jesus (His Bride), let's not lose that understanding.

Kind regards.

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Ken McGuire | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 29 2019 10:11 AM

For centuries there has been quite a bit of theological study on various early Christian witnesses in academic theology. Of particular interest to many is Ignatius of Antioch, who left us some letters that he wrote when he was being transported from Antioch to Rome for his expected martyrdom. The textual history of these letters is arguably complex - with some abbreviating them, and others expending on them to update them with later concerns and distinctions, but most scholars for over at least the last century have said that the "middle" version is authentic. One passage of his came to mind upon reading your response, Hamilton.

Flee from divisions, as the beginning of evils. You must all follow the bishop, as Jesus Christ followed the Father, and follow the presbytery as you would the apostles; respect the deacons as the commandment of God. Let no one do anything that has to do with the church without the bishop. Only that Eucharist which is under the authority of the bishop (or whomever he himself designates) is to be considered valid. (2) Wherever ever the bishop appears, there let the congregation be; just as wherever Jesus Christ is, there is the catholic church. It is not permissible either to baptize or to hold a love feast without the bishop. But whatever he approves is also pleasing to God, in order that everything you do may be trustworthy and valid.                (Ignatius to the Smyrnaeans 8)

Holmes, M. W. (1999). The Apostolic Fathers: Greek texts and English translations (Updated ed., pp. 189–191). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books.

At the very least I hear from figures like this that as important as it indeed is to make some distinctions between the Church and Jesus, her bride, we dare not make this distinction a separation. In fact, much of what this Lutheran has heard from Orthodox is that we Westerners have often done that - or at least muddy things in our desire to make clear distinctions. They find it hard to imagine talking about the Holy Spirit without talking about Prayer - and when they talk about Prayer they want to tie closely together the Prayer of the Church as a a whole with all the prayers of all the faithful. And wrapped up in all of this, they also talk about the Holy Spirit with the Trinity itself - as being sent from the Father through the Son to the Church - and so our lives as Christians are wrapped up in and around the divine life of God.

And so I strongly suspect that when they hear you talking about "baptism of the Holy Spirit" they would either be confused about what you mean, or say that of course when we are Baptized, we are also sealed with the holy oil of Holy Spirit... And if you are talking about a spiritual experience much like what has been called the Beatific Vision in much of western mysticism, they would remind you that in the Orthodox descriptions of this, this Vision is followed/lived out in an earthly community.

That all said, I am neither an authoritative interpreter of Eastern Orthodoxy nor is this really a topic appropriate to discussion here.

SDG

Ken McGuire

The Gospel is not ... a "new law," on the contrary, ... a "new life." - William Julius Mann

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Denise | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 29 2019 12:15 PM

Ken McGuire:
Of particular interest to many is Ignatius of Antioch, who left us some letters that he wrote when he was being transported from Antioch to Rome for his expected martyrdom. The textual history of these letters is arguably complex - with some abbreviating them, and others expending on them to update them with later concerns and distinctions, but most scholars for over at least the last century have said that the "middle" version is authentic.

Not detracting from your point, but a very nice intro qualifier to Ignatius. I grew up in the congregational world, but after all is said and done, as well as a victim of over-eager Ignatius helpers, in my mind, the NT succeeds or fails within his letters (apologetically, not necessarily theologically).


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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 29 2019 2:10 PM

Hamilton Ramos:
Is funny that you reference Globalsecurity (I just think is hilarious). Did not see that coming from you. 

I deliberately use a variety of sources so that forum users know I am not pushing a Catholic position/vocabulary but a broader position. Think of this choice as being in honor of my daughter-in-law who is a Lutheran pastor in Killeen, Tx (Fort Hood).

Hamilton Ramos:
because that is the feeling that Catholic Charismatics have.

How many Charismatic priests have you taken to lunch? How much of the leadership of the state Charismatic Catholics organization have you managed in their role(s) of liturgical ministers? How much training in Catholic healing prayer do you have? (Think Jan Aikire and Leo Thomas's Healing Ministry: A Practical Guide. Yes, I have a sculpture by Fr. Leo Thomas.) See web excerpt on prayer for healing from a non-Dominican source.

Hamilton Ramos:
I have shown to you what the core of Orthodox is by the link that Christopher posted:

Christopher Grant:

MJ's note ends with a quote that sums up the Orthodox view on theology very nicely (and riffs of Evagrius of Pontus):

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

Hamilton Ramos:
I am in all good will trying to point out the underneath key spiritual principles behind it all.

Please don't. It violates the no theology request of the guidelines and illustrates that your understanding is so different that you frequently misunderstand my posts. Your misrepresentation of the Catholic position verges on libelous - and again has no place in a thread on essential Orthodox reference works.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 29 2019 4:05 PM

Christopher Grant:
Which reference works would you list?

I found an interesting list at https://www.ocf.net/resources-for-bible-study/

  1. The Orthodox Study Bible: If you’re not already using it, the OSB has some helpful, basic articles and footnotes throughout the text.
  2. An Interlinear or Side-by-Side Bible or New Testament: Using both the Greek and/or Hebrew text alongside the English text can really help when you get stumped on a passage or everyone has really different translations. Plus, it brings up other interesting questions as you go along. There are a few online sources like BibleHub or BibleStudyTools or you can find them on Amazon (here’s one suggestion). For this and other books, I suggest purchasing one or two OCF copies that can be passed down rather than having everyone in the chapter get one.
  3. A Concordance: This nifty little book is basically a fancy index for the Bible, letting you find passages by topic. Again, there are some online tools on BibleStudyTools or you can go for Strong’s Concordance in print.
  4. A Bible Dictionary: Ever come across a word and wonder the history of that word, idea, or object? A Bible Dictionary is a step up from Wikipedia. Try Vine’s.
  5. Commentaries: There are about a million of these you could try, but the best, of course, are the Orthodox patristic commentaries, but certainly modern Orthodox (and non-Orthodox) authors have some things to add, too. Probably your local parish has a few of these you can borrow or might be willing to purchase them for the parish. Here are just a few:
    • Ancient Christian Commentary Series: This gives you just little snippits from a number of Fathers, East and West, on each passage. This is great for hearing from the cloud of witnesses and getting to know which Fathers you connect with the best.
    • The Bible and the Holy Fathers for Orthodox: Similar to Ancient Christian Commentaries in that it gives brief patristic passages, but compiled by an Orthodox author to be used with an Orthodox daily lectionary.
    • St. Theophylact: St. Theophylact’s commentaries on MatthewMarkLukeJohnEphesiansGalatians are available on Amazon.
    • St. John Chrysostom: Of course, St. John’s homilies are incredibly useful! You can find many of them for free in somewhat archaic English from Christian Classics Ethereal Library or you can order a volume such as this one. St. John has homilies on Genesis, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Matthew, John, Acts, Romans, I Corinthians, II Corinthians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians,  I Thessalonians, II Thessalonians, I Timothy, II Timothy, Titus, Philemon, and Hebrews. Whew. I think that’s it.
    • The Orthodox Bible Study Companion Series: Written by Fr. Lawrence Farley, these offer some simple and helpful reflections on the entire New Testament and are meant to be especially helpful if you are reading in the OSB.
    • Fr. Paul Tarazi: A biblical scholar from St. Vlad’s, Fr. Paul has written on Genesis, Joshua, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John (including his letters), Paul’s letters (with full volumes on Philippians, Colossians, Philemon, I Corinthians, II Corinthians, Romans, I Thessalonians, and Galatians.
  6. ExeGenius: Have you seen this really cool tool put out by the GOA’s Y2AM team? Go through the Sunday Gospel readings word by word with this interactive commentary which pulls together interesting portions of Bible dictionaries, concordances, and commentaries as well as adds a few thoughts geared specifically toward youth and young adults.
  7. OrthodoxYouthThese resources from the Antiochian Archdiocese include study guides, quizzes, and mp3s on the books of the New Testament for youth and young adults.
  8. Orthodox Scripture Study: Thanks to the ACROD seminary Christ the Saviour, you can tune in to live lectures on the Gospel of John or the Gospel of Matthew. They also archive video and audio versions of the lectures.
  9. Your Spiritual Advisor: You can never go wrong with having a priest helping you walk through the words of the Bible.

"Illumine our hearts, O Master Who lovest mankind, with the pure light of Thy divine knowledge. Open the eyes of our mind to the understanding of Thy gospel teachings. Implant also in us the fear of Thy blessed commandments, that trampling down all carnal desires, we may enter upon a spiritual manner of living, both thinking and doing such things as are well-pleasing unto Thee. For Thou art the illumination of our souls and bodies, O Christ our God, and unto Thee we ascribe glory, together with Thy Father, Who is from everlasting, and Thine all-holy, good, and life-creating Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen."

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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Christopher Grant | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 29 2019 4:28 PM

Hamilton, I would caution against trying to understand the Orthodox (or Catholic) Church from books.  It's a bit like trying to experience the Grand Canyon by looking at a map of Arizona.  You see the territory, but you miss the point.  

Returning to the original question, I would suggest the Septuagint, which was the version of the Bible that Jesus and the Apostles quoted, and differs markedly in places from the Masoretic texts:  https://www.logos.com/product/16106/brentons-septuagint-english-translation

While it's not an "Orthodox" translation (such a beast doesn't exist in English), I like the Douay-Rheims https://www.logos.com/product/5202/douay-rheims-bible if for no other reason than that it has all (or at least most) of the old testament intact.  

For those preferring the KJV, there is also the Cambridge Paragraph Bible https://www.logos.com/product/24557/the-new-cambridge-paragraph-bible-with-the-apocrypha-rev-ed

Going back to my original list These Truths We Hold is available on Logos: https://www.logos.com/product/42491/these-truths-we-hold-the-holy-orthodox-church-her-life-and-teachings

Catena Aurea contains some non-orthodox resources, but is otherwise a good commentary https://www.logos.com/product/5216/catena-aurea-commentary-on-the-four-gospels

Probably the biggest bang for the buck in terms of Patristic Resources is The Early Church Father's https://www.logos.com/product/7832/early-church-fathers-special-catholic-edition

With Logos' ability to index and search all of these resources, some of the value of Catena is diminished, but not all of the resources Aquinas used are in the other series, so there is still value there.

While missing the Menaion, Pentecostarion, and the Octoechos, The St. Tikhon's Orthodox Service Books bundle is a good reference for putting together or just reading the services: https://www.logos.com/product/42351/st-tikhons-orthodox-service-books

In extreme need, the Menaion can be replaced with the General Menaion (https://www.logos.com/product/32968/the-general-menaion), and the Sunday Octoechos is available here https://www.logos.com/product/33096/octoechos-or-the-book-of-eight-tones

Note that these are horrible translations, and that the General Menaion lacks a lot of the value of the full Menaion, as the general verses in praise of a saint can't compare to the specific verses written about that saint.  It's better than nothing, but I'll still visit my jurisdictional website for the verses rather than rely on either of these resources.  As an example:

The Sticheras of the Resurrection from the Octoechos, Tone 1.

ACCEPT our vespertine prayers, O Holy Lord, and grant us the remission of sins, for Thou alone hast made manifest unto the world the resurrection.

The Most Holy Governing Synod of Russia. (1898). Octoechos or The Book of Eight Tones: A Primer Containing the Sunday Service in Eight Tones. (N. Orloff, Trans.) (p. 1). London: J. Davy & Sons.

While I wouldn't use it as a general reference book, there is much value in being able to refer to the Ladder of Divine Ascent (And Hamilton, if you're looking for a systematic path to God, that's a great example) https://www.logos.com/product/120191/john-climacus-the-ladder-of-divine-ascent

As an aside, I don't think the indwelling of the Holy Spirit as understood by the average Pentecostal quite matches the indwelling of the Holy Spirit as understood by the average Orthodox.  For one thing, one of the chief dangers for us is pride, and the gift of miracles without sufficient humility is a surefire way to inflame that particular passion.  Miracle working Saints are common in the Orthodox church, but the average layman (or Priest, for that matter) is more likely to engage in simple intercessory prayer than to be directly given the gift of miracle working.  

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Christopher Grant | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 29 2019 4:34 PM

How could I have forgotten the Ancient Christian Commentaries Series?!  That's a great resource.  St.Theophylact's commentaries are also highly regarded, and sadly missing from my shelf.  I have concerns with Fr. Paul Tarazi (see http://orthodoxinfo.com/phronema/fr-paul-tarazi-from-study-to-heresy.aspx).

And of course, every Orthodox Christian should turn to his spiritual father for guidance.  But that's not a resource I can put on a bookshelf, or download to Logos.

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 29 2019 7:32 PM

Christopher Grant:

Thanks for the link. Has there been a response? I was left with an uneasy feeling re:the author expressing concern: was he reading the text as the average intended reader would or was he reading with the intent to find fault? When I next find myself reading Tarazi, I will pay closer attention to the perceived issues.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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R. Mansfield | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 29 2019 7:37 PM

Christopher Grant:
While it's not an "Orthodox" translation (such a beast doesn't exist in English)

What about the St. Athanasius Academy Septuagint (SAAS), the OT translation in the Orthodox Study Bible? It’s not perfect, but it is definitely an Orthodox translation of the LXX and the most readable of any LXX translation in my experience.

RMansfield@mac.com
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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, May 30 2019 2:59 AM

Christopher Grant:
I like the Douay-Rheims https://www.logos.com/product/5202/douay-rheims-bible if for no other reason than that it has all (or at least most) of the old testament intact.  

The Ecumenical canon NRSV includes the complete canon for both the Greek and the Slavic Orthodox. In Logos, using the NRSV as your highest priority Bible is the only way to get the entire ecumenical canon treated as canonical.

Christopher Grant:
Ladder of Divine Ascent (And Hamilton, if you're looking for a systematic path to God, that's a great example) https://www.logos.com/product/120191/john-climacus-the-ladder-of-divine-ascent

This book has been requested/suggested as traditional Lenten reading plan multiple times. Thinking of Lent (or the Great Fast)? Traditional reading schedule for John ClimacusWhat do you read repeatedly ... or seasonally; . . . 

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

Posts 569
Hamilton Ramos | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, May 30 2019 6:30 AM

Thanks for the post Ken.

I do not want to start a theological discussion type exchange here. Let it be enough to say that for some groups the Bible has more authority than any writing by any believer.

John 10:1 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door but climbs in by another way, that man is a thief and a robber. 2 But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. 3 To him the gatekeeper opens. The sheep hear his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4When he has brought out all his own, he goes before them, and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. 5 A stranger they will not follow, but they will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers.

If what any Bishop does or says goes against the expressed will of Jesus, His nature and character, I am not to follow, submit, take.

A true Bishop appointed by God (not an institution out of alignment with God's revealed revelation), I can follow. But you must understand that salvation is an individual thing. I am responsible to make sure that the persons that wants to be in charge of my growth is truly pointing me to the one and only savior: Jesus Christ.

Not all the Bishops have the individual persons salvation as top priority, in ideal life they should, but many times they do not.

Ken McGuire:
and so our lives as Christians are wrapped up in and around the divine life of God.

We can perfectly agree about this one. But in real life it does not happen, or people fall short of what restored Koinonia with God throgh the baptism of the Holy Spirit is supposed to be.

So that we are clear of what I mean by the term "baptism of the Holy Spirit" see:

https://ebooks.faithlife.com/products/10782/awakened-by-the-spirit-reclaiming-the-forgotten-gift-of-god

I could not get the page number to make a reference so:

Note that I am not promoting division, etc, Any one believer in any denomination can actually seek for that baptism of the Holy Spirit, which by the way was the second mission that Jesus (Lord and Savior) came to do: to baptize us with the Holy Spirit so that we can restore g:koinonia with God.

The experience of the Holy Spirit as depicted above, is what Orthodox devotees like the article posted http://www.pravoslavie.ru/47866.html go through I suppose, and is independent of denomination, group, tradition, etc.

Now getting more back in topic:

Are Orthodox systematic theologies included in the systematic theology section in the passage guide to your knowledge?

If not, which ones would you include?

Are there any systematic theologies that you find compatible with the Orthodox faith?

https://ebooks.faithlife.com/products/22623/truth-aflame

https://ebooks.faithlife.com/products/167643/renewal-theology-systematic-theology-from-a-charismatic-perspective

What are your favorite systematic theologies and the like both Orthodox and non-Orthodox if you care to share?

Thanks for the input, and thanks for Christlike exchange, thoughtful, tactful, respectful...

Kind Regards.

Posts 569
Hamilton Ramos | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, May 30 2019 6:46 AM

MJ. Smith:
I deliberately use a variety of sources so that forum users know I am not pushing a Catholic position/vocabulary but a broader position. Think of this choice as being in honor of my daughter-in-law who is a Lutheran pastor in Killeen, Tx (Fort Hood).

I think is great, do not get me wrong, I think all true truth comes from God who is the bestower of all good things.

MJ. Smith:
How many Charismatic priests have you taken to lunch? How much of the leadership of the state Charismatic Catholics organization have you managed in their role(s) of liturgical ministers? How much training in Catholic healing prayer do you have?

Remember that in my country the majority is Catholic. I was born a Catholic. I have many friends well involved in all kinds of Catholic endeavors, and we talk a lot about different things. 

 I listen to what their concerns are. I try to help them out to develop more their spirituality. Many times they find barriers for what they want to do.

I tell them not to give up, to keep working where God has put them, and to learn more about different parts of faith in Christ, even from different groups.

To many of them the situation is frustrating.

MJ. Smith:
Your misrepresentation of the Catholic position verges on libelous

Do you think I feel not bad when scandals with the clergy in the Catholic Church happens, and the leaders seem to not act decisively? Do you know how much it has affected normal Catholics here?

My concern is: can a system be developed, so that by the use of the gifts of the Holy Spirit persons not suited for clergy are not permitted from getting to positions where misconduct can happen?

In one of the articles that you mention the term "word of knowledge" is used. Why is not such concept used to prevent abuses by clergy?

From an independent perspective an independent Christian can see in the Bible: "by their fruits you will know them", are abuses fruit of the Holy Spirit? Is there a major problem going on?

Recently a Catholic  Priest in a neighbor country fled to ours because of a victim denouncing abuse, is that what Christianity is supposed to be?

Why is the Church not doing a more proactive system to check what the clergy is doing? why not develop systems of overwatch to prevent problems?

Do I hate Catholics? Are we quick to point fingers to other believers before looking into our own problems?

After high school graduation I was invited by a friend to join Benedictines (he did), I told him that I would only join Franciscans, but I did not feel I had what it takes to be a monk.

Do you know how many Catholics we have helped? and want to continue helping?

I see a lot of good things happening with the Charismatic Movement within the Catholic Church, but then I also hear what problems those in such go through.

MJ. Smith:
"To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

Best quote, I have mentioned before. and if you see even though it probably was uttered in a particular context, it actually applies to any Christian believer in any denomination.

Being connected to God is independent of denomination. Now if when that happens, then the denomination rejects you, that is another thing.

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