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#1 Sacha

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Posted 20 March 2014 - 05:03 PM


In another thread, Kostas kindly pointed me to Chrysostom's commentary on John 6:37.

Unfortunately, Chrysostom does not address the statement in its positive form, focusing instead on those who do not come and their illegitimate charge. While I agree with his thoughts, I was hoping that someone on the forum could shed some light on the positive statement in John 6:37?

"All that the Father gives to me, shall come to me, and him that comes to me I will in nowise cast him out".

A few questions:

- Who are those "given" by the Father to the Son? Every believer/Orthodox?
- The "shall come" seems very strong, implying certainty?
- Is that compatible with the OC's teaching on apostasy?

Thanks,
Sacha






 



#2 David Lindblom

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Posted 24 March 2014 - 09:22 PM


In another thread, Kostas kindly pointed me to Chrysostom's commentary on John 6:37.

Unfortunately, Chrysostom does not address the statement in its positive form, focusing instead on those who do not come and their illegitimate charge. While I agree with his thoughts, I was hoping that someone on the forum could shed some light on the positive statement in John 6:37?

"All that the Father gives to me, shall come to me, and him that comes to me I will in nowise cast him out".

A few questions:

- Who are those "given" by the Father to the Son? Every believer/Orthodox?
- The "shall come" seems very strong, implying certainty?
- Is that compatible with the OC's teaching on apostasy?

Thanks,
Sacha






 

According to Blessed Theophylact in his commentary on John he says:

 

To show that faith in Christ is not acquired by chance, but is a gift from God, bestowed by the Father on those who are worthy and upright of heart, the Lord declared: All that the Father giveth Me shall come to Me. This means, "The Father gives Me those who believe in Me. You Jews, being unworthy, are not given to Me by the Father . This is why you do not come to Me: you are not upright in heart. If you were, God the Father in His love for you would lead you to faith in Me." (pg. 106)

 

Don't know if this is the same thing St. John Chrysostom said, Bl. Theophylact draws heavily from him I know.  But if I could speculate myself, I think those given are only those who continue in the faith while those who wander off are not given because they no longer believe.  Eternal Security Protestants do use this verse as a proof text for that doctrine.  If this were the only scripture that talked about such things they would have a point but that is by no means the case.  Hope this was helpful.


Edited by David Lindblom, 24 March 2014 - 09:24 PM.


#3 David Lindblom

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 12:56 AM

Just another thot, for whatever it's worth, I believe in some Protestant circles all is not necessarily limited to people but can also refer to everything that the Father is giving to Christ ie all that is to be put under His feet.



#4 Sacha

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 07:43 PM

Hi David,

Thank you for the reply, appreciate it. Just to clarify, I do not believe in the doctrine of eternal security held by most protestants.

With that said, thanks for the reference to Blessed Theophylact. I think he comes closer to the very best answer one can give someone who points to John 6:37 as proof for eternal security. But not close enough...I'll explain later perhaps, but first wanted to address your thoughts:

I can see where you are coming from: you restrict the set of those whom the Father gives (is giving/didosin, present tense, active voice, singular) to those who will believe to the end and only to them. But let me question this in a friendly way: isn't this exactly what a Calvinist would say, i.e, "only the true elect will persevere to the end, and if one does not persevere to the end, this must mean that one was never genuinely saved to begin with." Such a protestant would also add that those are the two only options, truly persevere or never saved. And yet we know from Heb 10:26-31, that apostasy is a reality even for those who have received the knowledge of the truth (including the author of the epistle to the Hebrews), i.e, the truly saved.

So, let me ask you this:

- Is every Orthodox believer (whether faithful or apostate) given by the Father to the Son?

I think that the answer to the above might help in formulating another view on the verse.

Thank you again for your thoughts (or anyone else who wants to chime in),


Sacha

 



#5 David Lindblom

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 09:24 PM

So, let me ask you this:


- Is every Orthodox believer (whether faithful or apostate) given by the Father to the Son?


I think that the answer to the above might help in formulating another view on the verse.


Thank you again for your thoughts (or anyone else who wants to chime in),

 

As an Orthodox Christian now (5 years and counting after 30 years a staunch Prot) I'm not sure.  We might need to keep God's foreknowledge in mind here also.  But just to throw something out there, I would have to say that yes, all Orthodox Christians are given to the Son.  Further, it is the will of God that all of these will be raised up in the end and saved.  This is expressing God's will/intent/desire but is not, at this point, addressing man's freewill.  God will not override that.  So we are all given to the Son by the Father but we can walk away....that part just isn't dealt w/ here but is fleshed out elsewhere.  So, what do you think?


 



#6 Sacha

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 11:17 PM

"I would have  to say yes, all Orthodox Christians are given to the Son"

Ok. Let's return to John 6:37

"All that the Father gives to me, shall come to me..."

Setting up the logical proposition as:

P1: All that the Father gives to the Son shall come to Him
P2: All Orthodox believers are given to the Son
Conclusion: All Orthodox believers shall come to the Son.

Yet, we know that some true Orthodox believers fall away from the faith. So the above conclusion, by induction, cannot hold.

Do you see what I am getting at?

Maybe you can help me with something. As far as I can tell (have not put a lot of time into this), the expression "given to me" as it refers to people being given to Christ, is unique to John's Gospel. If I am mistaken, would gladly stand correction. There's only one other section of the NT in which I can find it, and that is in John 17...

 



#7 David Lindblom

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Posted 26 March 2014 - 02:46 AM

I can see the logic of your logic ;) but I'm not convinced that it's a necessity to go that route. But, for the sake of argument, let's assume you're right, then it appears on the surface that we're kinda stuck w/ and eternal security view.  I did read through John 17 as well as Bl. Theophylact's commentary on it.  John 17 bounces between the given ones being the Apostles at one point then believers in general.  As I have often found, the Fathers simply don't see what we see in scripture.  We are coming from 500 years of Prot/Catholic battles and interps while they are not.  Bl. Theophylact, for the most part, deals w/ the John 17 verses that talk about the Father giving to the Son and the Son giving eternal life to them from the perspective of how the Son is equal to the Father in divinity and power.  That their wills are aligned w/ each other.  All in keeping w/ the background of John's gospel which is the battle between Christ and the unbelieving jews.  They saw themselves as the Chosen people and that they followed God whereas Jesus was a false prophet and not from God.  In contrast, Jesus, was making it quite clear that they were not following God therefore were not the people of God but of the Devil.  Proof in the pudding was that He was from God and their disbelief and rejection of Him demonstrated their disconnect from God.  However he does deal w/ it a bit when he asks a rhetorical question of how can Christ claim to have lost none except the son of perdition.  B.T. states:

How can the Lord claim to have lost none of them, when Judas fell away, and many other followers left Him as well (John 6:66)? "As far as it depended on Me," He explains," I have lost none of them. I did everything on My part to keep them, and I guard them zealously. If some chose to reject Me, it is not My fault."

So, basically, he seems to simply put aside any literal meaning of these statements that would lend to an eternal security doctrine.  I think, if I understand him rightly, he sees Jesus as using language, that's not to be taken literally, to get across a point and not using language in a very wooden and literal manner if that makes any sense.

Well, that's what I've come up w/.  I'm, actually, really looking forward to seeing where you're going w/ this.  I've seen a fairly well known Calvinist debater named James White pin Arminians (who don't hold to eternal security) to the wall w/ the John 6:37 verse to hammer home the point of eternal security.


Edited by David Lindblom, 26 March 2014 - 02:49 AM.


#8 Sacha

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Posted 26 March 2014 - 11:45 PM

Hi David,

Thanks for your thoughtful reply, you raise a lot of pertinent points.

Starting with your opening comment: I'm not sure that the syllogism necessarily takes us down any route, it just...is...

The purpose of the syllogism wasn't to prove eternal security, but rather to show that one of its premises is false. I take it that you know which one of the two that is, obviously, P2 (you could substitute 'calvinists' or 'evangelicals' there too if you wanted to). This is why James White never fails to make repeated use of John 6:37 in debates: it is the quintessential ES/PS verse. But his exegesis of the verse is mistaken. It cannot be established on exegetical grounds, that the ones given to the Son by the Father are gentile believers spanning the ages (including him!). How can that be?

Well, I think you did very well by mentioning B.T's thoughts on the passage: indeed, St John is writing first and foremost to address the question of identity: is the Son one with the Father in divinity and power? But this does not effectively shut down White's argument, you see. If anything, he would argue that it is precisely the Identity in the equation that gives the doctrine of the perseverance of the saints/eternal security such force. So that insight re the identity, however helpful it may be, is insufficient as a response. Where do we go from here then? 

As you pointed out,  the Jews' rejection of Christ had for its foundation the idea that Christ was not of the Father. They reasoned that if He was, every Jew would believe in Him. By the way, this remains to this day, one of the key reasons given by non believing Jews who reject the Messiah. But as Christ tells them, the reason they do not believe is because they are not the Father's sheep. This has nothing to do with a Calvinistic like type of election, but rather with the fact that it is those who have listened and learned (aorist tenses) from the Father (John 6:45) who are His sheep. These faithful covenant Jews, are the ones given to the Son. Men such as the 12 and beyond them, the other disciples comprising the 70. Think of Nathaniel, whom Jesus describes as being without guile. They were covenant Jews whom God had preserved throughout the centuries, and now that Christ had come, who were handed to Him as the remnant of Israel from which would emerge a much greater plan of salvation involving not only that remnant, but men of every nation, tribe and tongue.

Regarding your inference from B.T's comments about Jesus use of non literal arguments. I would say the exact opposite: I think Jesus in the High Priestly prayer of John 17 is using very precise language. He says:

" I have manifested your name to the men whom you have given me out of the world. They were yours, you gave them to me, and they have kept your word." and

"While I was with them in the world, I kept them in your Name. Those whom you gave me, I have kept and none of them is lost except the son of perdition"

Notice a couple of things: first, Christ is using past tense "have manifested, have given, you gave, they have kept". Then as if to make unequivocally clear who it is that He is referring to, He says "While I was with them in the world", which is a precise identity reference/marker. Is it not? Who was Christ with in the world but His own Jewish disciples? Christ was never with gentiles in the world, His mission was to the Jews by and large. Yes, He did eventually send the Jew and Apostle Paul to the gentiles, but He himself was with His disciples in His ministry on earth. The past/aorist tense, exegetically at a minimum, does not seem to allow for a generalized sense in which someone like James White would take the passage. A question that ought to be posed to him in debates is this: "James, were you with the Son when he was in the world?" :)

So, in a sense, White is correct that all whom the Father gives shall come. Yes, every single one of them, except Judas. But where is he is sorely mistaken is in assuming that those given by the Father to the Son are necessarily gentile believers throughout the ages. As I have shown above, linguistically, and referring to the only other passage that sheds light on the idea of men 'given by the Father to the Son'/John 17, that makes zero sense. The ones given to the Son by the Father are those Jews who were living in right relationship with the Father prior to Jesus' appearance. These would include not only the disciples, but also men and women as Elizabeth and Zecharias, John the Baptist among others.

So, John 6:37 is fundamentally about an identity relation, and yes it does imply an undeniable success rate, but it needs to be understood in its original context, one as you have pointed out, deals with a very heated debate between a Jewish Messiah and Jewish people living in 1st century Israel. What are the implications of all this for the doctrine of apostasy? In no way does John 6:37 teach against it because it occurs in the greater context of the legitimacy of Christ as Messiah to His own people. Yes, as far as those jews whom God had preserved for the Son in the transition of covenants from old to new are concerned, there was assurance that they would indeed come, with only one precise exception, Judas. But one should not be extrapolating from this a more generalized doctrine of eternal security, for this would not be rightly dividing the Word. For the doctrine of apostasy, one should go to the texts that speaks directly to the matter, especially Hebrews 10:26-31.

Having shown White's exegesis to be mistaken, I also wanted to point out that the above has far reaching implications for our ecclesiology and relations with Jewish believers in Christ. But I won't be elaborating on that, I don't think it would be appropriate for the forum.

Peace,
S


 



#9 David Lindblom

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Posted 27 March 2014 - 01:33 AM

Ooo, that is very good.  I like what you have written and it does make sense.  Actually, I need to get to Church but I want to read over your post some more and ponder it a bit...not to debate but to really understand what you're saying.  Much of what you say I already believe to be the case but I didn't quite bring it to bare (?) on this particular issue.

 

Concerning the Jewish issue, your thots there would also be interesting.



#10 Sacha

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Posted 27 March 2014 - 02:02 AM

David,

Yes, please take your time, I'm very interested in your thoughts. I still very much feel the pull of the OC, although the issue of the relationship of the natural branches to the wild ones (Romans 11) among others is such a difficult topic/stumbling block that I sometimes wonder if it is any use bringing it up at all.. But if the above analysis makes sense to you, I'm curious to see how you would sort of tease out some of its ramifications.



#11 David Lindblom

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Posted 31 March 2014 - 03:18 AM

Hey Sacha, sorry for my delay in responding....just busy w/ family stuff. 

 

I really like your take on these statements of Christ.  I would say your argument would win the day if you are able to maintain w/in the text that limitation that Christ is only referring to those Jews who were in a faithful relationship w/ the Father prior to Him coming.  You might have to hold the ES person by the nook of their neck and keep them focused only on the text w/o introducing much more modern biblical thinking that feeds on the ideas of the Reformation that is swimming around in all our Protestant heads.

 

I had assumed that you were Orthodox.  So, are you saying that you have some kind of issue w/ the Orthodox Church concerning something about the the wild olive branches being grafted into the Vine?  I'd be curious as to what that was.  Not guaranteeing any answers but I'll give it a shot.



#12 Sacha

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Posted 31 March 2014 - 08:47 PM

Hi David,

Yes, in a nutshell that's a major issue for me, re the Apostle's imagery of the olive tree. Note however, that this is not only an issue for me with regards to the OC, but also all other predominantly gentile faith-groups which have roots in an alliance with a secular empire. That's pretty much all the major denominations, as far as I can tell. What I see in Romans 11 is one tree with 2 branches, one of which (the wild one) is grafted into the 'natural' branches own olive tree'.. Attached to this natural branch are some unequivocal promises/prophecies made by Paul, see Romans 11:1-2, for instance, or Romans 11:26, 29. Much as is the case with John 6:37, I see the tendency to read one's own identity into these verses as a major exegetical faux pas. When Paul says "all Israel shall be saved", and then leans on Isaiah 59:20-21, I find it very hard to imagine that he somehow means a group other than Jacob's descendants. It seems to me that just as all those who were given to the Son by the Father shall come and did come to Him, so will most certainly will Israel proper in the last days be saved. I don't know if you can see the parallel there. So what's the rub? The rub is that no major faith group today seems to be recognize the primacy of the natural branches (Rom 15:27). This in my view is a consequence of the very early schism that happened between the two branches in the first century, a schism which predates even the destruction of the temple.

 



#13 David Lindblom

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 04:51 AM

I read through Rom. 1, checked out what the Orthodox Study Bible had to say about it and read through the late Archbishop Dimitri Royster's commentary on Romans (St. Paul's Epistle to the Romans-a pastoral commentary) concerning chapter 11.  The Orthodox Study Bible sees the olive tree as Israel while Archbishop Dimitri, quoting many Fathers, sees it as Christ.  As far as the phrase And so all Israel will be saved both see it as being fulfilled when the full number of believing Jews and Gentiles have entered in.  This is how I see it also.  Paul spends too much time stressing the point that the Old Testament promises that the Jews viewed was concerning them alone, in actuality, are referring to those who had the faith of Abraham be they Jew or Gentile.  Simply being born a Jew profited nothing concerning salvation if there was no faith.  Before Paul, I don't see anyone interpreting the verses he quotes from the Old Testament as meaning to include the Gentiles yet he states that that is exactly what they mean.  So based on that I don't have an issue w/ him using Isaiah 59 in the same way.  Even the way vs. 26 starts out: And so...is right on the heels of Paul's explaining about the partial hardness that has come upon the Jews so that the fullness of the Gentiles can come in and then in this way all Israel will be saved....namely the True Israel or the Israel of God.  This being made up of all those who have the faith of Abraham.

 

I agree w/ you about Christians of all stripes being waaay too connected to some political group.  This has caused and does cause us all kinds of problems.

 

I would say the Dispensationalists certainly have a very high view of the Jews be they Christian or not.  To a fault I would say.  My personal experience is that I've only known, for sure, of 2 Jews who were Christians and went to church w/ me.  I'm not sure what you mean by primacy or how that should look or work itself out.  Paul seemed to be attempting to shut down some arrogance and an attitude of looking down upon the Jews by Christians.  I don't see anywhere in scripture where this kind of primacy is exemplified or commanded. 

 

Was the schism between believing Jews and Gentiles or are we talking about the various heretical Jewish groups: the Judaizers, Ebionites etc.  I think a Christian group known as the Nazerites (sp?) in Israel still exist and speak Aramaic and are Orthodox Christians.  They've always been there.  As before, I'm curious as to your thots.



#14 Sacha

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 05:40 PM

Hi David,

Quite a few thoughts there to address all at once, so let's start with what I think is foundational, i.e., what Paul means by Israel in Romans 11. While it's helpful to consider the epistle to the Romans as a whole when approaching the chapter, one should by no means lose sight of the trees for the forest... Context must begin with the immediate passage at hand, and then work it's way beyond it to consider what precedes and follows (as we saw with the phrase "all that the father gives" and John 6:37). This is of course, not an easy endeavor at all given Paul's elliptical/proleptical thought process. And to be clear, just as you recommended that I not allow a protestant to move beyond the context of John 6 and drift away to his theological grid, I feel that we ought to be doing the same here. But at any rate, that is where we must begin, with the immediate context. Now, your view is that Israel refers to believing Jews and Gentiles. Let's examine that:

consider v 25: "For I do not desire brethren, that you should be ignorant of this mystery, lest you should be wise in your opinion, that blindness in part has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in."

- Who are the brethren? The answer is in v 13 "for I speak to you Gentiles", Paul is speaking to gentile roman believers.
- He does not want them to be ignorant of this mystery, so he opens their eyes to it.
- Contrast this with what he terms as the "blindness in part that has happened to Israel".

From  the above 3 observations, one can infer this: if the gentile believing Romans are not blinded, but are already believers and now enlightened by Paul who explains this mystery to them, how can the reference to Israel in v 25 include both gentiles and jews?

Secondly, v 26 follows tightly on the heels of v 25 (trees for the forest): "And so, all Israel will be saved, as it is written..."

Exegetically, there is no reason to believe that Paul is switching from one understanding of Israel to another, in the span of 2 adjacent verses. In fact, there are reasons to believe that Paul is not: the use of the conjunction "and so" is a first hint, Paul is unpacking one seamless train of thought across vv. 25 to 32. Secondly, the nature of what is being discussed itself highlights this: the mystery is that one day, all Israel will be saved, the same Israel that is now blinded in part in v 25. So if one says that Israel represents both believing Jews and Gentiles, the logic of Paul's thought is broken.

One could start there.

Then, working our way back to what precedes vv. 25-27, we can consider the opening statement of the chapter:

"I say then, has God cast away His people? Certainly not! For I am also an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin. God has not cast away His people whom he foreknew..."

When Paul describes himself as an Israelite, he is not referring to an abstract belonging to a group which includes both Jews and Gentiles. In fact, he is very narrow in his definition, he points down to the tribe of Benjamin as proof of his existence as an Israelite (which also explains the 'in part' of v 25). Israel for him cannot point to both jew and gentile, because no gentile was ever part of the tribe of Benjamin, let alone any other tribe.


Third, let's move beyond vv. 25-27, and advance to vv. 28-32.

"Concerning the gospel they are enemies for your sake, but concerning the election they are beloved for the sake of the fathers. For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable."

The 'they' in the above refers to Israel of vv. 25-26. But if we take your definition of Israel, i.e., believing Jews and Gentiles, that does not fit what Paul is saying at all. How can believing Jews and Gentiles be enemies of the gentile believers at Rome whom Paul is addressing? What makes sense instead is that those who are enemies are Israel proper, i.e., non believing Jews.

I'll stop here, and address the primacy (first among equals) idea later. Thanks for your thoughts.





 



#15 David Lindblom

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Posted 02 April 2014 - 06:02 AM

Well, I looked carefully over chapter 11 again and noting what you highlighted and I hate to admit it but I think you're right.  Paul does woodenly keep the 2 groups separate and Israel here certainly does mean ethnic Jews.  This meaning is consistent throughout this passage.  Very good.



#16 Sacha

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Posted 02 April 2014 - 05:09 PM

Re primacy, first what's it's not: it's most certainly not that ethnic Jews are superior in any way to Gentiles, for example, in regards to ethnicity, or more importantly, salvation. Paul states unequivocally that there is now no Jew nor Greek, male nor female etc, meaning that we share a common bond of salvation in Christ. He does not intend however to erase all differences here, for afterall a male believer doesn't become a female believer upon believing..., but only seeks to establish that as far as salvation is concerned, the Jew has no advantage over the Greek, it is by mercy/grace that he is saved, as is the gentile.

Primacy in my mind has to do with honoring that other Pauline statement:

"For I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first, but also for the Greek".

To the Jew first. Why? Is God playing favorites? Far from it, He is only making it very clear that mankind has no claim on grace. God did not bless the Jews first in history because they were of themselves intrinsically special. They were chosen by Him, meaning that their being chosen was entirely an act of grace by God who choses the weak and powerless to confound the strong. What power did the Hebrews have when Pharaoh closed in on them before the crossing? None. But nevertheless, lest we gentiles become proud of our 'accomplishments' over church history, in my view, we have to recognize that Jewish believers in Christ were first to receive salvation, and we ought to think of them as our older brother in the faith. If that recognition is made, then there is a certain respect and honor that goes to the elder, especially considering that it is thanks to his faithfulness that we now have the Scriptures. Long before the Roman church canonized the NT in the 4th century, Jewish scribes and Pharisees had canonized the Jewish Bible, and following that the disciples of Christ preserved the NT/epistles for us. Had it not been for that, there would be nothing to compile by Athanasius or to canonize by others... Look at how Paul himself expresses this idea of respect/honor in Romans 15:

"...I am on my way to Jerusalem in the service of the Lord's people there. For Macedonia and Achaia were pleased to make a contribution for the poor among the Lord's people in Jerusalem. For if the Gentiles have shared in the Jews' spiritual blessings, they owe it to the Jews to share with them their material blessings..."

Paul makes a clear distinction between the two groups once again. It is not that the Jewish believers at Rome are superior to the gentile believers in Macedonia and Achaia, but instead that these Jewish believers are elders in the faith, having received the spiritual blessing of God and passed it on (think John 6:37, 45). And because they are elders, Paul is saying to the gentiles, were it not for them, you would not have any spiritual blessings, so help them out financially. And indeed, it is hard to argue with Paul's logic. Which is the greater? A material blessing or a spiritual blessing. What use is it that we gain the whole world but forfeit our soul? Again note that Paul does not conflate the two identities, Jew and Gentile. Yes they both have the same Savior, are both saved by Grace, and are equals, but there is still primacy of the older brother over the younger one. There is still a sense of honoring the older brother that is needed, and preached by no less than Paul himself who was the Apostle to the gentiles. These two concepts are not mutually exclusive.

But here's my question to you: as you survey the landscape of the faith today, is this what you see happening? Go back in history, what happened where to cause such a schism between the two brothers? And not only a schism, but also a deep sense of distrust and disdain in some cases... Can you imagine if someone stood up in a church meeting today and said "Hey gentiles, you owe it to the Jews because they blessed you spiritually?"  That man would be shown the door. So, what are the ramifications of all this for how we think about our ecclesiology?

David I'm glad that you are Orthodox, you and other Orthodox are in a better position than me.The above is just one aspect of my struggle, and it's a privilege to share some of it here.




 



#17 David Lindblom

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Posted 03 April 2014 - 06:05 AM

W/o really knowing the nature of your struggle I'm not sure I can comment too much here.  I don't have any qualms about what you write here but I do wonder how relevant it is in most places.  No disrespect intended to either you and your struggle or to any Jewish Christians.  By not being relevant I mean that there are so few Jewish Christians in many places that their being our elders in the faith is rather abstract.  Perhaps I'm showing my Gentile ways here.  As I stated earlier the Dispensationalists certainly venerate the Jews...I was of that persuasion for a long time.  Many say that their views on Jewish Exceptionalism is inherent enough in our culture that it actually guides much of our foreign policy towards Israel.  But that's not really what you're talking about I think.

 

As far as the split between Jewish and Gentile Christians, I'm not familiar w/ history to give much of an answer.  Perhaps those who became known as Judaizers that Paul fought w/ so much somewhat soured relations.  I think also as the Church became increasingly dominated by Gentiles the Jews were left behind.  The looking down upon Paul was already dealing w/ here in Romans probably simply continued and was made worse by Gentile sinful attitudes of blaming the Jews for Christ's death and such.  I'm just guessing and rambling here though.

 

As far as ecclesiology, again, not really sure.  I think the abject lack of Jewish Christians throughout history lends to them being left out of the equation.  It does say a partial hardening has happened to them so....  Would be interested in you fleshing out your struggles.  Can't promise to be of any help though, perhaps others can be.






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