• Please remember: Pray for Ukraine in the Prayer forum; Share news in the Christian News section; Discuss religious implications in FFA: Religious Topics; Discuss political implications in Politics (and if you don't have access, PM me) Thank you! + Fr. George, Forum Administrator

John of Damascus' exegesis of De 4:15 is impossible

Alfred Persson

OC.Net Guru
Joined
Aug 1, 2010
Messages
1,205
Reaction score
0
Points
36
Location
California
John's exegesis of De 4:15f is impossible. God expressly rules out any kind of male human icon as imaging His similitude.

Deu 4:15 And take good heed to your hearts, for ye saw no similitude in the day in which the Lord spoke to you in Choreb in the mountain out of the midst of the fire:
16 lest ye transgress, and make to yourselves a carved image, any kind of figure (EIKWN), the likeness of male or female,-LXX, Brenton


Therefore, all who image the flesh of Jesus, and insist this does not contradict De 4:15f, thereby deny 1)He is God; 2)The Word became male human flesh.

Moreover separating Transcendent Deity from His Flesh is Nestorianism. Both natures are united indivisibly in the One Person of the Eternal Son.

One cannot image the male human flesh of Jesus without thereby rending Him from His infinitude and making Him like His creation. It is deducible from God's commanding images of cherubim overshadowing the Mercy seat, that the reason for the prohibition is the transcendence of God not be undermined.

Therefore, any EIKONA of Jesus is violating not just the letter of Deu 4:15f, but also its spirit.

Contrary to John of Damascus' citing the images of cherubs etc as collaborative proof, their existence does the opposite as God never commanded these be venerated, nor are God's people shown venerating them anywhere in scripture, except in two instances by the Patriarchs, and it is evident from the Law's prohibition of this, that God did not approve. He clearly "winked" at their error (Ac 17:30):

Abraham planted a grove

Gen 21:33 "Then Abraham planted a field at the Well of Oath, and there he called on the name of the Lord."-Orthodox Study Bible

33. Abraham planted a grove—Hebrew, “of tamarisks,” in which sacrificial worship was offered, as in a roofless temple.
[1]Jamieson, R., Fausset, A. R., Fausset, A. R., Brown, D., & Brown, D. (1997). A commentary, critical and explanatory, on the Old and New Testaments. On spine: Critical and explanatory commentary. (Ge 21:33). Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.

Jacob set up a pillar

Gen 18:16 Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, "The Lord is in this place, and I did not know it."
Gen 18:17 So he was afraid and said "How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven."
Gen 18:18 Now Jacob rose early in the morning, and took the stone he put at his head, set it up as a pillar, and poured oil on top of it.-Orthodox Study Bible

This veneration was not acceptable to God as He later forbade both in Deuteronomy 16:21f

Deut 16:21 You shall not plant for yourself any grove or any tree near the altar of the Lord your God which you build for yourself.
Deut 16:22 You shall not set up a pillar the Lord your God hates.- Orthodox Study Bible.

 

augustin717

Taxiarches
Joined
Mar 15, 2006
Messages
7,110
Reaction score
191
Points
63
Faith
Higher Criticism
Jurisdiction
Dutch
I
believe they are why we were run out of the Middle East. Don't reply to that here, do so on the thread I will now post.
You were not run out of the Middle East for you and your heretical, restaurationist delusion  were never there, to begin with.
 

ialmisry

Strategos
Warned
Post Moderated
Joined
Aug 17, 2007
Messages
41,983
Reaction score
196
Points
63
Location
Chicago
Alfred Persson said:
John's exegesis of De 4:15f is impossible. God expressly rules out any kind of male human icon as imaging His similitude.

Deu 4:15 And take good heed to your hearts, for ye saw no similitude in the day in which the Lord spoke to you in Choreb in the mountain out of the midst of the fire:
16 lest ye transgress, and make to yourselves a carved image, any kind of figure (EIKWN), the likeness of male or female,-LXX, Brenton


Therefore, all who image the flesh of Jesus, and insist this does not contradict De 4:15f, thereby deny 1)He is God; 2)The Word became male human flesh.

Moreover separating Transcendent Deity from His Flesh is Nestorianism. Both natures are united indivisibly in the One Person of the Eternal Son.

One cannot image the male human flesh of Jesus without thereby rending Him from His infinitude and making Him like His creation. It is deducible from God's commanding images of cherubim overshadowing the Mercy seat, that the reason for the prohibition is the transcendence of God not be undermined.

Therefore, any EIKONA of Jesus is violating not just the letter of Deu 4:15f, but also its spirit.

Contrary to John D's citing the images of cherubs etc as collaborative proof, their existence does the opposite as God never commanded these be venerated, nor are God's people shown venerating them anywhere in scripture, except in two instances by the Patriarchs, and it is evident from the Law's prohibition of this, that God did not approve. He clearly "winked" at their error (Ac 17:30):

Abraham planted a grove

Gen 21:33 "Then Abraham planted a field at the Well of Oath, and there he called on the name of the Lord."-Orthodox Study Bible

33. Abraham planted a grove—Hebrew, “of tamarisks,” in which sacrificial worship was offered, as in a roofless temple.
[1]Jamieson, R., Fausset, A. R., Fausset, A. R., Brown, D., & Brown, D. (1997). A commentary, critical and explanatory, on the Old and New Testaments. On spine: Critical and explanatory commentary. (Ge 21:33). Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.

Jacob set up a pillar

Gen 18:16 Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, "The Lord is in this place, and I did not know it."
Gen 18:17 So he was afraid and said "How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven."
Gen 18:18 Now Jacob rose early in the morning, and took the stone he put at his head, set it up as a pillar, and poured oil on top of it.-Orthodox Study Bible

This veneration was not acceptable to God as He later forbade both in Deuteronomy 16:21f

Deut 16:21 You shall not plant for yourself any grove or any tree near the altar of the Lord your God which you build for yourself.
Deut 16:22 You shall not set up a pillar the Lord your God hates.- Orthodox Study Bible.
I see your rantings, but I don't see any of the exegesis of our Father among the Saints, St. John of Damascus.  Maybe you should first read what you deny, so you don't look ridiculous.
 

ialmisry

Strategos
Warned
Post Moderated
Joined
Aug 17, 2007
Messages
41,983
Reaction score
196
Points
63
Location
Chicago
augustin717 said:
I
believe they are why we were run out of the Middle East. Don't reply to that here, do so on the thread I will now post.
You were not run out of the Middle East for you and your heretical, restaurationist delusion  were never there, to begin with.
You beat me to the punch.

Btw,us Orthodox, Alfred, are still there.
 

LBK

Toumarches
Joined
May 13, 2008
Messages
13,665
Reaction score
26
Points
38
Faith
Orthodox
From the proselytising thread:

Look for my thread on icons. I view them as the Early Byzantines did, they are idolatrous.
Catacomb icons, anyone? The church at Dura Europos? the writings of Sts Basil the Great, Epiphanius of Cyprus, John Chrysostom, and many others, including one of the very earliest saints, Dionysius the Areopagite, all of whom defend iconography?

Your grasp of history is quite lacking, my dear Alfred.
 

Alfred Persson

OC.Net Guru
Joined
Aug 1, 2010
Messages
1,205
Reaction score
0
Points
36
Location
California
ialmisry said:
I see your rantings, but I don't see any of the exegesis of our Father among the Saints, St. John of Damascus.  Maybe you should first read what you deny, so you don't look ridiculous.
Not I who appears ridiculous.

Trust me, I've been called worse and it brings me joy:

22 Blessed are you when men hate you, And when they exclude you, And revile you, and cast out your name as evil, For the Son of Man's sake.
23 Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! For indeed your reward is great in heaven, For in like manner their fathers did to the prophets.
(Luk 6:22-23 NKJ)

Won't anyone address my argument?
 

ialmisry

Strategos
Warned
Post Moderated
Joined
Aug 17, 2007
Messages
41,983
Reaction score
196
Points
63
Location
Chicago
Alfred Persson said:
ialmisry said:
Alfred Persson said:
chrevbel said:
Alfred Persson said:
I love the bottom line, and if I go off on tangents before reaching it, I feel so unsatisfied.
Well, I for one am still a bit confused on what your bottom line is.  You seem to be saying that you'd be Orthodox if it weren't for our generally negative view of proselytizing.  Is that about right?  But then you also mention all these other reasons you wouldn't be Orthodox.  Right?  So your bottom line seems to be merely informing us that you don't plan to be Orthodox.  Does that effectively sum it up?  You started a thread for this?  You joined a forum for this?
When I let my apologetic loose, I be proselytizing!!! I don't debate to lose
Yet I get a picture that you often have to take your tools and go home.


...If you can't handle that, ban me now.
Enough of the bravado. Actually say something, or take your martyr complex elsewhere.
Ok, you asked for it.
::) LOL.

Look for my thread on icons. I view them as the Early Byzantines did, they are idolatrous.
Early Byzantines? Are those the characters the Humanists were thinking of when they invented the term "Byzantine," at the same time they were inveting your dogmas?

I believe they are why we were run out of the Middle East.
The iconoclasts came and went, and the Iconophiles, i.e. the Orthodox remained.  In fact, this was the Empire of the Romans under the iconoclasts:

and then under their successors, the Orthodox Macedonian Dynasty,
or with less detail

Hmm. That looks a tad bigger. If the Romans got kicked out of the Middle East, it had nothing to do with icons.  Quite the opposite.
 

Alfred Persson

OC.Net Guru
Joined
Aug 1, 2010
Messages
1,205
Reaction score
0
Points
36
Location
California
Alveus Lacuna said:
Alfred Persson said:
Won't anyone address my argument?
I would, but I'm intimidated by your brilliance.
I apologize.

Perhaps this then:

I've heard folks get irrational when you attack their idols, they respond to reasoned argument with reviling etc.

Is that true?
 

ialmisry

Strategos
Warned
Post Moderated
Joined
Aug 17, 2007
Messages
41,983
Reaction score
196
Points
63
Location
Chicago
Alfred Persson said:
ialmisry said:
I see your rantings, but I don't see any of the exegesis of our Father among the Saints, St. John of Damascus.  Maybe you should first read what you deny, so you don't look ridiculous.
Not I who appears ridiculous.

Trust me, I've been called worse and it brings me joy:

22 Blessed are you when men hate you, And when they exclude you, And revile you, and cast out your name as evil, For the Son of Man's sake.
23 Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! For indeed your reward is great in heaven, For in like manner their fathers did to the prophets.
(Luk 6:22-23 NKJ)

Won't anyone address my argument?
St. John already has.  You invoked his name to smear him.  Numbers 12:8

Here.  I practically have to put the nipple in your mouth:
Three treatises on the divine images By John (of Damascus, Saint.), Andrew Louth
http://books.google.com/books?id=x_U1mtafEPMC&pg=PA90&dq=John+of+Damascus+on+the+divine+images+4:15&hl=en&ei=65hXTM3QBIyJnQfpnM3YCA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CCsQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q&f=false
 

Alfred Persson

OC.Net Guru
Joined
Aug 1, 2010
Messages
1,205
Reaction score
0
Points
36
Location
California
ialmisry said:
Alfred Persson said:
ialmisry said:
I see your rantings, but I don't see any of the exegesis of our Father among the Saints, St. John of Damascus.  Maybe you should first read what you deny, so you don't look ridiculous.
Not I who appears ridiculous.

Trust me, I've been called worse and it brings me joy:

22 Blessed are you when men hate you, And when they exclude you, And revile you, and cast out your name as evil, For the Son of Man's sake.
23 Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! For indeed your reward is great in heaven, For in like manner their fathers did to the prophets.
(Luk 6:22-23 NKJ)

Won't anyone address my argument?
St. John already has.  You invoked his name to smear him.  Numbers 12:8

Here.  I practically have to put the nipple in your mouth:
Three treatises on the divine images By John (of Damascus, Saint.), Andrew Louth
http://books.google.com/books?id=x_U1mtafEPMC&pg=PA90&dq=John+of+Damascus+on+the+divine+images+4:15&hl=en&ei=65hXTM3QBIyJnQfpnM3YCA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CCsQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q&f=false
Thanks anyway...

I didn't post for links.

I want reasoned response to my argument. That is intellectually stimulating and alone has the hope of leading the lost to Christ. Yes, I am proselytizing. I warned all:

NKJ  1 Peter 3:15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear; 16 having a good conscience, that when they defame you as evildoers, those who revile your good conduct in Christ may be ashamed. (1Pe 3:15 NKJ)

 

ialmisry

Strategos
Warned
Post Moderated
Joined
Aug 17, 2007
Messages
41,983
Reaction score
196
Points
63
Location
Chicago
Alfred Persson said:
Alveus Lacuna said:
Alfred Persson said:
Won't anyone address my argument?
I would, but I'm intimidated by your brilliance.
I apologize.

Perhaps this then:

I've heard folks get irrational when you attack their idols, they respond to reasoned argument with reviling etc.

Is that true?
I don't know. You tell us.  Proverbs 12:15.

Jeremiah 7:24.  False dogma are also idols.
 

ialmisry

Strategos
Warned
Post Moderated
Joined
Aug 17, 2007
Messages
41,983
Reaction score
196
Points
63
Location
Chicago
Alfred Persson said:
ialmisry said:
Alfred Persson said:
ialmisry said:
I see your rantings, but I don't see any of the exegesis of our Father among the Saints, St. John of Damascus.  Maybe you should first read what you deny, so you don't look ridiculous.
Not I who appears ridiculous.

Trust me, I've been called worse and it brings me joy:

22 Blessed are you when men hate you, And when they exclude you, And revile you, and cast out your name as evil, For the Son of Man's sake.
23 Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! For indeed your reward is great in heaven, For in like manner their fathers did to the prophets.
(Luk 6:22-23 NKJ)

Won't anyone address my argument?
St. John already has.  You invoked his name to smear him.  Numbers 12:8

Here.  I practically have to put the nipple in your mouth:
Three treatises on the divine images By John (of Damascus, Saint.), Andrew Louth
http://books.google.com/books?id=x_U1mtafEPMC&pg=PA90&dq=John+of+Damascus+on+the+divine+images+4:15&hl=en&ei=65hXTM3QBIyJnQfpnM3YCA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CCsQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q&f=false
Thanks anyway...

I didn't post for links.
So you posted without knowing what you are talking about.

You brought up St. John.  You haven't addressed him.  If you wanted us to address your novel interpretations, you should have made a thread on that.

I want reasoned response to my argument. That is intellectually stimulating and alone has the hope of leading the lost to Christ. Yes, I am proselytizing. I warned all:

NKJ  1 Peter 3:15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear; 16 having a good conscience, that when they defame you as evildoers, those who revile your good conduct in Christ may be ashamed. (1Pe 3:15 NKJ)
II Peter 3:15 Paul also wrote you with the wisdom that God gave him. 16 He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction.
 

Alfred Persson

OC.Net Guru
Joined
Aug 1, 2010
Messages
1,205
Reaction score
0
Points
36
Location
California
ialmisry said:
Alfred Persson said:
Alveus Lacuna said:
Alfred Persson said:
Won't anyone address my argument?
I would, but I'm intimidated by your brilliance.
I apologize.

Perhaps this then:

I've heard folks get irrational when you attack their idols, they respond to reasoned argument with reviling etc.

Is that true?
I don't know. You tell us.  Proverbs 12:15.

Jeremiah 7:24.  False dogma are also idols.
15 The ways of fools are right in their own eyes; but a wise man hearkens to counsels. (Pro 12:15 LXE)

24 But they hearkened not to me, and their ear gave no heed, but they walked in the imaginations of their evil heart, and went backward, and not forward; (Jer 7:24 LXE)

All the more reason to address my argument rationally, appealing to Scripture for insight, lest we not give the LORD our ear.

 

LBK

Toumarches
Joined
May 13, 2008
Messages
13,665
Reaction score
26
Points
38
Faith
Orthodox
Alfred Persson said:
I apologize.

Perhaps this then:

I've heard folks get irrational when you attack their idols, they respond to reasoned argument with reviling etc.

Is that true?
No, Alfred. Most of us try to be dispassionate and objective, using verifiable Orthodox tradition (scripture, the writings of the Fathers, the liturgical deposit of the Church, the resolutions of the Ecumenical Councils), as well as history.

There is nothing new under the sun. Iconoclasm is as old as Christianity itself, and keeps reinventing itself in the form of Calvinist prohibitions of images,  the Jehovah's Witnesses insistence that Christ was executed on a vertical pole, not on a cross, etc etc - yet iconography survives and thrives to this day.
 

Alfred Persson

OC.Net Guru
Joined
Aug 1, 2010
Messages
1,205
Reaction score
0
Points
36
Location
California
LBK said:
Alfred Persson said:
I apologize.

Perhaps this then:

I've heard folks get irrational when you attack their idols, they respond to reasoned argument with reviling etc.

Is that true?
No, Alfred. Most of us try to be dispassionate and objective, using verifiable Orthodox tradition (scripture, the writings of the Fathers, the liturgical deposit of the Church, the resolutions of the Ecumenical Councils), as well as history.

There is nothing new under the sun. Iconoclasm is as old as Christianity itself, and keeps reinventing itself in the form of Calvinist prohibitions of images,  the Jehovah's Witnesses insistence that Christ was executed on a vertical pole, not on a cross, etc etc - yet iconography survives and thrives to this day.
I did not see reasoned argument in that quote...only a claim.

I would truly enjoy a dispassionate objective, and verifiable Orthodox response, citing the scripture we both love dear, how you suppose it contradicts my argument.

 

LBK

Toumarches
Joined
May 13, 2008
Messages
13,665
Reaction score
26
Points
38
Faith
Orthodox
Alfred Persson said:
I did not see reasoned argument in that quote...only a claim.

I would truly enjoy a dispassionate objective, and verifiable Orthodox response, citing the scripture we both love dear, how you suppose it contradicts my argument.
You are the one who has raised the "idolatry" allegation against the Orthodox, by invoking St John of Damascus. If you wish to have a truly objective discussion on this matter, then take the time to read and absorb what St John has written in the defense of icons, as linked to by ialmisry. Here's another link, to an HTML of the same document:

http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/basis/johndamascus-images.html#PART%20I

If and when you have read St John's work, then we might be able to have a proper discussion on the matter.
 

FormerReformer

Archon
Site Supporter
Joined
Nov 24, 2009
Messages
2,775
Reaction score
20
Points
38
Age
42
Location
Santa Fe, NM
Website
mcommini2.blogspot.com
Faith
Convertodox
Jurisdiction
Netodoxy
Alfred Persson said:
John's exegesis of De 4:15f is impossible. God expressly rules out any kind of male human icon as imaging His similitude.

Deu 4:15 And take good heed to your hearts, for ye saw no similitude in the day in which the Lord spoke to you in Choreb in the mountain out of the midst of the fire:
16 lest ye transgress, and make to yourselves a carved image, any kind of figure (EIKWN), the likeness of male or female,-LXX, Brenton


Therefore, all who image the flesh of Jesus, and insist this does not contradict De 4:15f, thereby deny 1)He is God; 2)The Word became male human flesh.

Moreover separating Transcendent Deity from His Flesh is Nestorianism. Both natures are united indivisibly in the One Person of the Eternal Son.

One cannot image the male human flesh of Jesus without thereby rending Him from His infinitude and making Him like His creation. It is deducible from God's commanding images of cherubim overshadowing the Mercy seat, that the reason for the prohibition is the transcendence of God not be undermined.

Therefore, any EIKONA of Jesus is violating not just the letter of Deu 4:15f, but also its spirit.

Contrary to John D's citing the images of cherubs etc as collaborative proof, their existence does the opposite as God never commanded these be venerated, nor are God's people shown venerating them anywhere in scripture, except in two instances by the Patriarchs, and it is evident from the Law's prohibition of this, that God did not approve. He clearly "winked" at their error (Ac 17:30):

Abraham planted a grove

Gen 21:33 "Then Abraham planted a field at the Well of Oath, and there he called on the name of the Lord."-Orthodox Study Bible

33. Abraham planted a grove—Hebrew, “of tamarisks,” in which sacrificial worship was offered, as in a roofless temple.
[1]Jamieson, R., Fausset, A. R., Fausset, A. R., Brown, D., & Brown, D. (1997). A commentary, critical and explanatory, on the Old and New Testaments. On spine: Critical and explanatory commentary. (Ge 21:33). Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.

Jacob set up a pillar

Gen 18:16 Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, "The Lord is in this place, and I did not know it."
Gen 18:17 So he was afraid and said "How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven."
Gen 18:18 Now Jacob rose early in the morning, and took the stone he put at his head, set it up as a pillar, and poured oil on top of it.-Orthodox Study Bible

This veneration was not acceptable to God as He later forbade both in Deuteronomy 16:21f

Deut 16:21 You shall not plant for yourself any grove or any tree near the altar of the Lord your God which you build for yourself.
Deut 16:22 You shall not set up a pillar the Lord your God hates.- Orthodox Study Bible.
"Eh, the Bible says a lot of things"- Chief Wiggum from a "Treehouse of Horror" episode, in response to 'Judge not lest ye be judged', right before the attempted execution of a witch.

Seriously, the Bible says a lot of things.  Some of these things are contradictory (this does not mean that the Bible contradicts itself, paradox is an ancient tradition found in Eastern wisdom).  If you look into past threads on icons you will see this question brought up (comes up about once every few months in the Convert Issues forum) in a more respectful manner.  

We can cite many examples from the Old Testament of Jews venerating not only the Ark of the Covenant but the Temple, the Temple Mount, and even the city of Jerusalem itself.

As regards your passages from Deuteronomy, we must look at these in the greater context of the religious environment the Hebrew settlers were moving into.  Trees and groves by this time had become associated not just with a reverent attitude of worship but particular gods and goddesses of fertility.  A perfectly innocent practice of reverence in the time of Abraham had become something with a completely different meaning in the time of Moses and Joshua.  As for pillars... Well, I guess David and Solomon really messed up when they built the Temple, but then how else could they hold the roof up?  Again, it wasn't the practice of setting up any old pillar that the Hebrew were commanded against, but a specific type of pillar (much different from Jacob's pillow cum "pillar") which represented the phallic boast of Canaanite gods.

Now, to the actual task at hand- the Deuteronomy 4:15 passage.  I will bold the gaping hole in your logic.   "And take good heed to your hearts, for ye saw no similitude in the day in which the Lord spoke to you in Choreb in the mountain out of the midst of the fire:
16 lest ye transgress, and make to yourselves a carved image, any kind of figure (EIKWN), the likeness of male or female,-LXX, Brenton"

By the way, the OSB, which you apparently own since you quoted it for your later texts renders this into a more modern grammatical structure as this: "So be careful to guard your souls, for you saw no form when the Lord spoke to you at Horeb on the mountain from the midst of the fire. 16 Do not act lawlessly and make for yourselves a carved form of any image; the likeness of male or female"  It seems that you merely selected a translation that would appear to back your argument up

See, it was because God did not show Himself on Horeb that the Israelites were forbidden to make any figure.  The Israelites were not yet ready for the Incarnation, but they had symbols aplenty to prepare themselves for that event (the Passover being most obvious).  Once God took on the form of man such a prohibition was no longer applicable.  God had become man, a recordable and identifiable Jewish male, whose words could be written down and whose figure could be drawn and painted.

But, hey, as long as we're on the subject of idolatry, how about those abhorrent poles that got Solomon into so much trouble?  There's no way those could become acceptable, right?  It's not like God would ever get elevated on a pole, albeit with some sort of bar across the upper portion, not for any reason whatsoever....
 

Thankful

Elder
Joined
Jun 19, 2009
Messages
263
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Location
Pacific Northwest
FormerReformer said:
See, it was because God did not show Himself on Horeb that the Israelites were forbidden to make any figure.  The Israelites were not yet ready for the Incarnation, but they had symbols aplenty to prepare themselves for that event (the Passover being most obvious).  Once God took on the form of man such a prohibition was no longer applicable.  God had become man, a recordable and identifiable Jewish male, whose words could be written down and whose figure could be drawn and painted.
Thank you for this. As a new convert, this is the clearest, most detailed explanation I have seen and I appreciated reading it. I'd understood the part about the incarnation and the ability to have icons because of that, but I hadn't seen this explanation based on the passage in Deuteronomy.
 

Alfred Persson

OC.Net Guru
Joined
Aug 1, 2010
Messages
1,205
Reaction score
0
Points
36
Location
California
Now, to the actual task at hand- the Deuteronomy 4:15 passage.  I will bold the gaping hole in your logic.   "And take good heed to your hearts, for ye saw no similitude in the day in which the Lord spoke to you in Choreb in the mountain out of the midst of the fire:
16 lest ye transgress, and make to yourselves a carved image, any kind of figure (EIKWN), the likeness of male or female,-LXX, Brenton"

By the way, the OSB, which you apparently own since you quoted it for your later texts renders this into a more modern grammatical structure as this: "So be careful to guard your souls, for you saw no form when the Lord spoke to you at Horeb on the mountain from the midst of the fire. 16 Do not act lawlessly and make for yourselves a carved form of any image; the likeness of male or female"  It seems that you merely selected a translation that would appear to back your argument up


No, I want it clear the Septuagint forbids every kind of (EIKWN)

And you evaded my points:

1)John's exegesis of De 4:15f is impossible as God expressly rules out any kind of male human icon as imaging His similitude.

Deu 4:15 And take good heed to your hearts, for ye saw no similitude in the day in which the Lord spoke to you in Choreb in the mountain out of the midst of the fire:
16 lest ye transgress, and make to yourselves a carved image, any kind of figure (EIKWN), the likeness of male or female,-LXX, Brenton


2)Moreover separating Transcendent Deity from His Flesh is Nestorianism. Both natures are united indivisibly in the One Person of the Eternal Son.

3)It is evident from all the other God approved images in the Temple, Ark, etc, that God has no problem with images at all....ONLY those that render the Transcendent Infinite God finite like His creatures. That violates the Holiness of God, His separateness from all creation.

There are more, but lets start with these, shall we?
 

LBK

Toumarches
Joined
May 13, 2008
Messages
13,665
Reaction score
26
Points
38
Faith
Orthodox
Alfred Persson said:
Now, to the actual task at hand- the Deuteronomy 4:15 passage.  I will bold the gaping hole in your logic.   "And take good heed to your hearts, for ye saw no similitude in the day in which the Lord spoke to you in Choreb in the mountain out of the midst of the fire:
16 lest ye transgress, and make to yourselves a carved image, any kind of figure (EIKWN), the likeness of male or female,-LXX, Brenton"

By the way, the OSB, which you apparently own since you quoted it for your later texts renders this into a more modern grammatical structure as this: "So be careful to guard your souls, for you saw no form when the Lord spoke to you at Horeb on the mountain from the midst of the fire. 16 Do not act lawlessly and make for yourselves a carved form of any image; the likeness of male or female"  It seems that you merely selected a translation that would appear to back your argument up


No, I want it clear the Septuagint forbids every kind of (EIKWN)

And you evaded my points:

1)John's exegesis of De 4:15f is impossible as God expressly rules out any kind of male human icon as imaging His similitude.

Deu 4:15 And take good heed to your hearts, for ye saw no similitude in the day in which the Lord spoke to you in Choreb in the mountain out of the midst of the fire:
16 lest ye transgress, and make to yourselves a carved image, any kind of figure (EIKWN), the likeness of male or female,-LXX, Brenton


2)Moreover separating Transcendent Deity from His Flesh is Nestorianism. Both natures are united indivisibly in the One Person of the Eternal Son.

3)It is evident from all the other God approved images in the Temple, Ark, etc, that God has no problem with images at all....ONLY those that render the Transcendent Infinite God finite like His creatures. That violates the Holiness of God, His separateness from all creation.

There are more, but lets start with these, shall we?
It is patently obvious that you have not read St John of Damascus' treatise. Please read it first. It's not exactly honest to condemn someone's writings without having read and absorbed it first. Quoting and condemning one snippet of it is not objective discourse.
 

FormerReformer

Archon
Site Supporter
Joined
Nov 24, 2009
Messages
2,775
Reaction score
20
Points
38
Age
42
Location
Santa Fe, NM
Website
mcommini2.blogspot.com
Faith
Convertodox
Jurisdiction
Netodoxy
Taking your points backwards then:

1) God rendered His own Transcendent infinitude into finity.  "Who being in the form of God and counting it not theft to be equal to God, emptied Himself, taking the form of a slave, and being made in the likeness of man, and found in fashion as man" (Phil 2:6,7)  He bridged the separation from His creation.  To quote one of your supposed favorites, St Athanasius: "God became man so that man could become god."

2)  Both natures are indeed united, which is why

3) St John of Damascus can declare that Deut 4:15 no longer applies.  We can make pictures of God because God made Himself man.  (The Septuagint also forbids pork, shellfish, suffering a witch to live, and many other things we overlook because God became man)

 

jnorm888

Archon
Joined
Jan 27, 2008
Messages
2,517
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Location
Pittsburgh
Website
ancientchristiandefender.blogspot.com
Alfred Persson said:
ialmisry said:
I see your rantings, but I don't see any of the exegesis of our Father among the Saints, St. John of Damascus.  Maybe you should first read what you deny, so you don't look ridiculous.
Not I who appears ridiculous.

Trust me, I've been called worse and it brings me joy:

22 Blessed are you when men hate you, And when they exclude you, And revile you, and cast out your name as evil, For the Son of Man's sake.
23 Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! For indeed your reward is great in heaven, For in like manner their fathers did to the prophets.
(Luk 6:22-23 NKJ)

Won't anyone address my argument?

What Argument?







ICXC NIKA
 

ialmisry

Strategos
Warned
Post Moderated
Joined
Aug 17, 2007
Messages
41,983
Reaction score
196
Points
63
Location
Chicago
Since the OP doesn't want to address St. John (as his title suggests), but just malign him, I've started a thread where we can discuss the teaching of Pearsonism on icons, which the OP seems to want to bait and switch here.
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,29149.msg459415/topicseen.html#msg459415
 

Robert W

Elder
Joined
Jul 31, 2007
Messages
469
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Age
40
Location
Vaasa, Finland
Alfred Persson said:
3)It is evident from all the other God approved images in the Temple, Ark, etc, that God has no problem with images at all....ONLY those that render the Transcendent Infinite God finite like His creatures. That violates the Holiness of God, His separateness from all creation.
(emphasis mine)
One of the reasons people respond to you by ridicule Alfred, is that this whole way of thinking is so foreign to Orthodox people. We believe that God indeed became man in every way you and me are men. We believe that God took on the form of the CREATED man. I don't know how to explain this fantastic mystery other than repeating it again and again. God became HUMAN and took on the form of CREATED FLESH!

It is incomprehensible to us that we are allowed to paint pictures of trees, animals, our relatives and anything we see, except Christ. Why were people even allowed to see Christ if they were forbidden to paint pictures of what they had seen?

As others have said Alfred, you are free to express your opinions here. Just don't expect too much "debate" or "dialogue" when your arguments are incomprehensible to us.  :D

EDIT: Also, attacking the saints of the Church does not further your case either. ;)
 

visitor

Member
Joined
Jul 17, 2010
Messages
110
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Alfred Persson said:
Alveus Lacuna said:
Alfred Persson said:
Won't anyone address my argument?
I would, but I'm intimidated by your brilliance.
I apologize.

Perhaps this then:

I've heard folks get irrational when you attack their idols, they respond to reasoned argument with reviling etc.

Is that true?
Hi.

Watch this: Angelos. What is that? It's a word represented in letters--it's literally an image of the word. It is not an image of the thing, but it is an image of the abstraction that is a word. Words themselves are representations even when spoken.

Is Angelos transcendental? Yes it is. Therefore the printed word Angelos is itself an image of something which exists in heaven.

The Bible itself is representation, and is composed of representations. We study it as an icon---an icon full of icons. We venerate the Bible.


Some people, however, have turned the Bible itself into an idol. Biblioatry I call it. Essentially, they use the Bible as a ouija board to extract answers that they themselves supply before they even open the book. St. John Chrysostom once said that anything at all can be justified by Scripture, and it has been proven by history to have been a correct hypothesis (mostly by the insanely conflict- and economics- crazy Protestant current of history...).

So what proof is this you offer? At best, your proof is a reinvention of the wheel! It is a proof that representations can lead us toward God.

But the Bible is not the Word of God. Christ is the Word of God. The big news here, really, is that you are the idolater and should repent.

But returning to the reinvention of the wheel... Do you not think it possible that these same arguments that you purvey in your shamelessly misnamed post were offered by better men than thou, and defeated by better men than thou at Ecumenical Council?

So anyway. We hope you enjoyed your visit to the bridge, and that you will remember for years to come your big opportunity at the helm. You're now an official Special Reserve Junior Captain! Here's your official Special Reserve Junior Captian button.  :police: ...There you go...

Bye now.
 

LBK

Toumarches
Joined
May 13, 2008
Messages
13,665
Reaction score
26
Points
38
Faith
Orthodox
Allow me to take a different approach:

Alfred, what would be your reaction to someone spitting, or stomping on, or burning a Bible?
 

visitor

Member
Joined
Jul 17, 2010
Messages
110
Reaction score
0
Points
0
LBK said:
Allow me to take a different approach:

Alfred, what would be your reaction to someone spitting, or stamping, or burning a Bible?
Heavy.
 

Alfred Persson

OC.Net Guru
Joined
Aug 1, 2010
Messages
1,205
Reaction score
0
Points
36
Location
California
FormerReformer link

Taking your points backwards then:

3)It is evident from all the other God approved images in the Temple, Ark, etc, that God has no problem with images at all....ONLY those that render the Transcendent Infinite God finite like His creatures. That violates the Holiness of God, His separateness from all creation.

1) God rendered His own Transcendent infinitude into finity.  "Who being in the form of God and counting it not theft to be equal to God, emptied Himself, taking the form of a slave, and being made in the likeness of man, and found in fashion as man" (Phil 2:6,7)  He bridged the separation from His creation.  To quote one of your supposed favorites, St Athanasius: "God became man so that man could become god."


Incorrect for it is written:

NKJ  John 1:18 No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him. (Joh 1:18 NKJ)

As we have seen the human flesh of the Son, Gods' transcendent Deity remained transcendent:

NKJ  John 3:13 "No one has ascended to heaven but He who came down from heaven, that is, the Son of Man who is in heaven. (Joh 3:13 NKJ)


###


2)Moreover separating Transcendent Deity from His Flesh is Nestorianism. Both natures are united indivisibly in the One Person of the Eternal Son

2)  Both natures are indeed united, which is why



Incorrect, as icons cannot image Divine Nature they tear the human nature of the Son from His divine Nature = Nesotrian error.


Moreover, icons manage the impossible by also inspiring Monophysite error among the illiterate. What else can they conclude when the two natures of Christ are in the One Icon, a monophysite confusion of natures.



##

1)John of Damascus' exegesis of De 4:15f is impossible as God expressly rules out any kind of male human icon as imaging His similitude.

Deu 4:15 And take good heed to your hearts, for ye saw no similitude in the day in which the Lord spoke to you in Choreb in the mountain out of the midst of the fire:
16 lest ye transgress, and make to yourselves a carved image, any kind of figure (EIKWN), the likeness of male or female,-LXX, Brenton[/i]

3) St John of Damascus can declare that Deut 4:15 no longer applies.  We can make pictures of God because God made Himself man.  (The Septuagint also forbids pork, shellfish, suffering a witch to live, and many other things we overlook because God became man)



Incorrect:

If John of Damascus is right then then Is 40:25 no longer applies and God is unholy:

25 To whom then will ye liken me, or shall I be equal? saith the Holy One. (Isa 40:25 KJV)

Inasmuch as the divine holiness is the separateness of the Divine Being from all finiteness of the creature, it includes the impossibility of forming an image of the Divine Being. For the connection of the two ideas compare the passage Isa. 40:25.- Oehler, G. F., & Day, G. E. (2009). Theology of the Old Testament. (111). Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.


If John of Damascus is right Christ's flesh is His similitude then Jesus is not God for it is written:

NKJ  John 1:18 No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him. (Joh 1:18 NKJ)


If John of Damascus is correct Jesus incarnate body is the similitude of God  then the Word never became human flesh and His dwelling among us was in appearance only (Deu 4:15f).

But that is impossible as it is written:

John 1:14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us (Joh 1:14 NKJ)
 

LBK

Toumarches
Joined
May 13, 2008
Messages
13,665
Reaction score
26
Points
38
Faith
Orthodox
Alfred, it is increasingly obvious that you have not read St John of Damascus' essay in full. One you have done this, and only once you've done this, will most, if not all, of us, listen to what you have to say.
 
Joined
Apr 17, 2007
Messages
2,983
Reaction score
320
Points
83
Age
58
Location
USA
Faith
Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction
Patriarchate of Antioch
I don't understand much of what is being said here but I do realize that when seeing the Icon of the Christ child with the Theotokos & reading how the wise men worshipped the Lord in Matthew 2:11 and then seeing the holy icon of Christ the pantocrator on the dome & reading Colossians 1:15-16 how am I worshipping idols? If I could not read but upon hearing the scriptures & seeing a holy illustration, what "idols" are being worshipped? If I know the cloud of heavenly witness of the saints (in Hebrews) & see a holy illustration how are idols being worshipped? They are not, this is worship of God in His holy house.
 

Robert W

Elder
Joined
Jul 31, 2007
Messages
469
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Age
40
Location
Vaasa, Finland
Alfred Persson said:
As we have seen the human flesh of the Son, Gods' transcendent Deity remained transcendent:
Christ is no mere "avatar" remote controlled from heaven. Christ is the second person of the Trinity. Christ is God, and we have seen him. The Father remains unseen, but we have still seen God.

If depicting Christ is tearing Divinity from humanity and falling into nestorianism, then all who saw Christ were nestorians (I will stand or fall together with them). I fail to understand the difference between seeing Christ and depicting Christ.

EDIT: Mayby I should also read this essay, written by Saint John of Damascus, that you all talk about. :D Thank you for the link LBK.
 

jnorm888

Archon
Joined
Jan 27, 2008
Messages
2,517
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Location
Pittsburgh
Website
ancientchristiandefender.blogspot.com
Robert W said:
Alfred Persson said:
As we have seen the human flesh of the Son, Gods' transcendent Deity remained transcendent:
Christ is no mere "avatar" remote controlled from heaven. Christ is the second person of the Trinity. Christ is God, and we have seen him. The Father remains unseen, but we have still seen God.

If depicting Christ is tearing Divinity from humanity and falling into nestorianism, then all who saw Christ were nestorians (I will stand or fall together with them). I fail to understand the difference between seeing Christ and depicting Christ.

EDIT: Mayby I should also read this essay, written by Saint John of Damascus, that you all talk about. :D Thank you for the link LBK.
The OO nonchalcedonians also embrace Icons and so according to his logic this will make them Nestorians too!

The truth is, his argument is a Nestorian one, he just doesn't know it yet. I wonder if he is able to call our blessed Mother Theotokos?

His argument against Icons and the 7th council would have to be against the 3rd council as well.









ICXC NIKA
 

jnorm888

Archon
Joined
Jan 27, 2008
Messages
2,517
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Location
Pittsburgh
Website
ancientchristiandefender.blogspot.com
Thankful said:
FormerReformer said:
See, it was because God did not show Himself on Horeb that the Israelites were forbidden to make any figure.  The Israelites were not yet ready for the Incarnation, but they had symbols aplenty to prepare themselves for that event (the Passover being most obvious).  Once God took on the form of man such a prohibition was no longer applicable.  God had become man, a recordable and identifiable Jewish male, whose words could be written down and whose figure could be drawn and painted.
Thank you for this. As a new convert, this is the clearest, most detailed explanation I have seen and I appreciated reading it. I'd understood the part about the incarnation and the ability to have icons because of that, but I hadn't seen this explanation based on the passage in Deuteronomy.

I agree! Good job Mike!









ICXC NIKA
 

Melodist

Archon
Joined
Dec 30, 2009
Messages
2,523
Reaction score
0
Points
36
Age
40
Alfred Persson said:
NKJ  John 1:18 No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him. (Joh 1:18 NKJ)
You forgot the second half of that verse.
No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him.

And also John 14:9
Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?

2Cor 4:4
In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

Col 1:15
Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature:
 

theistgal

Archon
Site Supporter
Joined
Jun 16, 2008
Messages
2,477
Reaction score
1
Points
0
Location
Sunny Southern Cal
Alfred, does the Bible you use have any pictures in it?

If not, do you think it is OK for Bibles to use pictures?

Is it OK for a child in Sunday school to draw a picture of Jesus and hang it up in her room to look at?

Just curious - are you opposed to all religious artwork, always and everywhere?
 

visitor

Member
Joined
Jul 17, 2010
Messages
110
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Alfred Persson said:
FormerReformer link




###


2)Moreover separating Transcendent Deity from His Flesh is Nestorianism. Both natures are united indivisibly in the One Person of the Eternal Son

2)  Both natures are indeed united, which is why



Incorrect, as icons cannot image Divine Nature they tear the human nature of the Son from His divine Nature = Nesotrian error.


Moreover, icons manage the impossible by also inspiring Monophysite error among the illiterate. What else can they conclude when the two natures of Christ are in the One Icon, a monophysite confusion of natures.







Our Special Reserve Junior Captain! Where's your button? ...Oh well, nevermind. Here's another one.  :police: ...There you go. How come you haven't been answering any of the stronger critiques and questions put to you? ...There, there now. Of course your in charge! You don't have to answer people if you don't want to.

It's pretty clear that you are wholly and entirely unfamiliar with the Iconoclast controversy, or you would know how this dialogue resolves itself.

And I am pretty sure that you don't understand the Monophysite heresy either (I'm sticking up for my "non-Chalcedonians" here--stay of my back please, boys). Monophysitism, as it was called, was "softened" into Monotheletism... which thesis also cannot be pictured in an icon, true enough. Did you know that we even had Monothelete emperors! And we had Iconoclast emperors too! The latter had a propensity for replacing holy icons with.... are you ready for this? .....portraits of themselves! Weird huh. Oops... you dropped your little pin with your picture on it...  :police: There you go. It's all about you.

Pay attention in school and pray, then maybe you can talk sensibly about this someday instead of--if I may borrow a rather unfortunate metaphor from Greek philosophy--reasoning about colors as one who's been purblind from birth.


 

ialmisry

Strategos
Warned
Post Moderated
Joined
Aug 17, 2007
Messages
41,983
Reaction score
196
Points
63
Location
Chicago
Robert W said:
Alfred Persson said:
3)It is evident from all the other God approved images in the Temple, Ark, etc, that God has no problem with images at all....ONLY those that render the Transcendent Infinite God finite like His creatures. That violates the Holiness of God, His separateness from all creation.
(emphasis mine)
One of the reasons people respond to you by ridicule Alfred, is that this whole way of thinking is so foreign to Orthodox people. We believe that God indeed became man in every way you and me are men. We believe that God took on the form of the CREATED man. I don't know how to explain this fantastic mystery other than repeating it again and again. God became HUMAN and took on the form of CREATED FLESH!

It is incomprehensible to us that we are allowed to paint pictures of trees, animals, our relatives and anything we see, except Christ. Why were people even allowed to see Christ if they were forbidden to paint pictures of what they had seen?

As others have said Alfred, you are free to express your opinions here. Just don't expect too much "debate" or "dialogue" when your arguments are incomprehensible to us.  :D

EDIT: Also, attacking the saints of the Church does not further your case either. ;)
Yes, St. John desposes of Perssonism's Nestroian arguments quite decisively, something AP would know if he read the words of our father among the saints.
 
Top