Pages

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

The Norms of Earthly Life in the Eschaton


By St. Theophan the Recluse

The Lord said of the future life that people there do not marry and are not given in marriage — that is, our everyday earthly relationships will have no place there. It would follow that none of the norms of earthly life will either. Neither science, nor art, nor governments, nor anything else will exist. What will there be? God will be all in all. And since God is spirit, He unites with the spirit and acts on what is spiritual. All life there will be a continuous flow of spiritual movements.

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

The Righteous Shall Dwell in Eternal Fire


By John Sanidopoulos

In the Hebrew version* of the Book of Isaiah (33:14), the question is asked: "Who of us can dwell with the consuming fire? Who of us can dwell with everlasting burning?" In verses 15 and 16, we get the answer to this question: "Those who walk righteously and speak what is right, who reject gain from extortion and keep their hands from accepting bribes, who stop their ears against plots of murder and shut their eyes against contemplating evil — they are the ones who will dwell on the heights, whose refuge will be the mountain fortress."

What does the Prophet Isaiah mean here by "consuming fire"? Deuteronomy 4:24 and Hebrews 12:29 inform us that "our God is a consuming fire." Both Deuteronomy and Hebrews says this in the context of explaining that our God is a jealous God, who alone demands worship, and will not tolerate anyone who worships false gods. For those who give other gods worship instead of the true God, He will be a consuming fire. This consuming and eternal fire in the New Testament is called "Hell."

Thursday, June 6, 2019

The Relationship Between the Ascension of Christ and His Second Coming


By Hedrik F. Stander

The New Testament links Christ's ascension with his second coming. We read in Acts 1:10-11 that, when Jesus ascended to heaven, two men dressed in white said to the disciples that "this same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven." The ancient theologians often argued about the meaning of the words "in the same way." Ps.-Epiphanius suggests that it means that Christ will come "in bodily form." When he returns to the earth, he will also keep his side which was wounded by the soldier's spear to the front so the Jews could see whom they had pierced (c.f. Rev. 1:7). And Augustine believes that just as Christ ascended as both God and man, he will also come again as both God and man. Diadochus states that Christ will descend on a cloud since he ascended on a cloud.

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

The Wildest Monsters of the Apocalypse


"Though St. John the Evangelist saw many strange monsters in his vision, he saw no creature so wild as one of his own commentators."

- G.K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy, Ch. 2.


Thursday, April 4, 2019

Will Constantinople Be the Capital of Greece in 2020?

An 1803 map from Cedid Atlas refers to Istanbul as Islambol 
(though the Bosphorus is called the Istanbul Strait on the map)

By John Sanidopoulos

Last month President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey made remarks and answered questions on current issues in a joint interview with Kanal 7, TVNET and Ülke TV in Istanbul. Among the things he commented on was the name of the city of Istanbul, and whether or not it would be called Constantinople again. He said: "Istanbul will never be Constantinople." He further said: "This is Islambol. We do not have any Constantinople on our minds or in our dreams. We will not allow something like this to happen."

Islambol is a Turkish folk-etymological adaptation of Istanbul created after the Ottoman conquest of 1453 to express the city's new role as the capital of the Islamic Ottoman Empire. It is first attested shortly after the conquest, and its invention was ascribed by some contemporary writers to Sultan Mehmed II himself. Some Ottoman sources of the 17th century, most notably Evliya Çelebi, describe it as the common Turkish name of the time. Between the late 17th and late 18th centuries, it was also in official use. The first use of the word "Islambol" on coinage took place in 1703 during the reign of Sultan Ahmed III. The term Kostantiniyye (Costantinopolis) still appeared, however, into the 20th century.