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Prayers for Judas Iscariot

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#21 Hieromonk Ambrose

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Posted 15 August 2013 - 04:13 AM

Dear Andreas, the same Akathist is used in Russia.  Here, for example, on the website of the Diocese of Saratov
 

 


Ikos 5


Отче наш, спаси погубивших себя в омрачении разсудка. Отче наш, да угаснет пламень нечестия их в море благости Твоея.



#22 Rdr Andreas

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Posted 15 August 2013 - 06:11 AM

It is the case that there has been in recent years a more balanced approach to the tragedy of suicide as evidenced by, for example, this:

http://www.scoba.us/...on-suicide.html

The thread, however, is about Judas, and in the light of the words of our Lord Himself and the hymnography of the Church, it would be most unwise for anyone to pray for the soul of Judas.



#23 Hieromonk Ambrose

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Posted 15 August 2013 - 07:58 AM

It is the case that there has been in recent years a more balanced approach to the tragedy of suicide as evidenced by, for example, this:

http://www.scoba.us/...on-suicide.html

The thread, however, is about Judas, and in the light of the words of our Lord Himself and the hymnography of the Church, it would be most unwise for anyone to pray for the soul of Judas.

I have never prayed for Judas or Stalin... but if somebody were to ask for a Panikhida I would  not refuse.  I believe I would be obliged to ask the bishop.  Orthodox believe in forgiveness and redemption after death up until the Last Judgement..  There is the Third Keeling Prayer at Pentecost for the release of those from hell.



#24 Rdr Andreas

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Posted 15 August 2013 - 10:44 AM

I would have a question in my mind about a bishop who authorised a panikhida for the one whom Christ Himself called 'the son of perdition.'  St John Chrysostom was cited, but he also said that Judas brought upon himself intolerable punishment: see Homily LXXXIII on Matthew.


Edited by Andreas Moran, 15 August 2013 - 10:53 AM.


#25 Hieromonk Ambrose

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Posted 15 August 2013 - 03:16 PM

My conscience troubles me about such as Judas and Stalin. I have until today never thought of praying for them, but simply going with the common opinion that they are in hell and will never exit that gloomy place.  But given the Church's prayer for the deliverance of those in hell, may we say with certitude that prayer for Judas , Stalin, etc., will not benefit them?  How dreadful if the Almighty is waiting upon our prayers and they are never offered up to Him.  Metropolitan  Hilarion in his “Christ the Conqueror of Hell" says the tradition is that Christ utterly emptied hell, hades, Limbo Patrum of every single human soul when He descended to harrow hell.  Only Satan and the fallen angels remained. Did this exclude Judas?  Was he the one solitary human soul to be left behind?  I have no answers, but I would never limit the infinite mercy and compassion of Christ nor the ways He may act with regard to the dead.


Edited by Hieromonk Ambrose, 15 August 2013 - 03:20 PM.


#26 Rdr Andreas

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Posted 15 August 2013 - 03:54 PM

The cases of Stalin and Judas are not the same.  For one thing, Judas committed suicide whereas, according to historians, Stalin was murdered (probably by Beria).  Also, a book was published in Russia a few years ago by the daughter of a priest in which she says that towards the end of Stalin's life, her father was summoned to the Kremlin three times to hear Stalin's confession.  About that I cannot say more - it's what my wife told me.  A more apt comparison - and I'm not sure such comparisons get us anywhere - would be Judas and Hitler.

 

There is no consensus in the Holy Fathers about whether all in hades (not 'hell') left there.  In any case, the Paschal texts tell us that hades was despoiled or destroyed, so 'where' thereafter is anyone, including the devil and his demons, I am not sure.  Presumably, they experienced and will for all time and after time experience the everlasting fire prepared for them as Christ said (Matthew 25:41) since they cannot repent.



#27 Hieromonk Ambrose

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Posted 15 August 2013 - 04:48 PM

Something interesting from the bishop-theologian
Metropolitan Hilarion Alfeyev:---


 

“The descent of Christ into Hades is one of the most mysterious, enigmatic and inexplicable events in New Testament history. In today’s Christian world, this event is understood differently. Liberal Western theology rejects altogether any possibility for speaking of the descent of Christ into Hades literally, arguing that the scriptural texts on this theme should be understood metaphorically. The traditional Catholic doctrine insists that after His death on the cross Christ descended to hell only to deliver the Old Testament righteous from it. A similar understanding is quite widespread among Orthodox Christians.


 

“On the other hand, the New Testament speaks of the preaching of Christ in hell as addressed to the unrepentant sinners: ‘For Christ also died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit; in which he went and preached to the spirit in prison, who formerly did not obey, when God’s patience waited’. However, many Church Fathers and liturgical texts of the Orthodox Church repeatedly underline that having descended to hell, Christ opened the way to salvation for all people, not only the Old Testament righteous. The descent of Christ into Hades is perceived as an event of cosmic significance involving all people without exception. They also speak about the victory of Christ over death, the full devastation of hell and that after the descent of Christ into Hades there was nobody left there except for the devil and demons.”


 

Christ the Conqueror of Hell


The Descent of Christ into
Hades in Eastern and Western Theological Traditions

A lecture delivered at St Mary’s Cathedral,
Minneapolis, USA, on 5 November 2002


http://orthodoxeurope.org/page/11/1/5.aspx



#28 Rdr Andreas

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Posted 15 August 2013 - 05:21 PM

'Many' - not all.



#29 Hieromonk Ambrose

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Posted 15 August 2013 - 11:36 PM

'Many' - not all.

 

Met.Hilarion:-- "However, many Church Fathers and liturgical texts of the Orthodox Church repeatedly underline that having descended to hell, Christ opened the way to salvation for all people, not only the Old Testament righteous."

 

I must read through what he has written and see if he specifically references citations from the Fathers and the liturgy.


Edited by Hieromonk Ambrose, 15 August 2013 - 11:37 PM.


#30 Rdr Andreas

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Posted 16 August 2013 - 12:11 AM

I can't find it but I did some research on this and I think posted it in a forum here, but it was clear there was no 'fronema ton pateron' about this.



#31 Rdr Andreas

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Posted 16 August 2013 - 12:45 AM

This was said by Met. Hilarion: 'According to John Damascene, Christ preached to all those who were in hell, but His preaching did not prove salutary for all, as not all were capable of responding to it. For some it could become only ‘a denunciation of their disbelief’, not the cause of salvation.'



#32 Hieromonk Ambrose

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Posted 16 August 2013 - 12:48 AM

>so 'where' thereafter is anyone, including the devil and his demons<

 

It's a surprise to many people to discover that the Bible gives earth as the dwelling place of Lucifer and the fallen angels.  They share the earth with us.  However common wisdom sees them as inhabiting hell and leaving it to come and go marauding among us.



#33 Rdr Andreas

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Posted 16 August 2013 - 12:59 AM

Whatever - they prowl around, if the words of St Peter are anything to go by.



#34 petruska

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Posted 16 August 2013 - 12:20 PM

I've thought about this(conquering of Hell) a lot, perhaps too much since I would want to believe that we should focus on our own salvation and hope and pray for all and see myself as The sinner and my neighbour as the image of God, no matter who my neighbour is.

Here is what I hope to believe:

If we say that God is like this or like that, we make an image of Him who is beyond our understanding in the sense that we could understand His ways. Nevertheless, God is Love and since if He is love, we should trust Him and place all our hope on Him.

We should hope that God will have mercy on us all, even me, but we can't force Him to anything and this makes us understand that we are nothing and my neighbour is everything and that Love will win and All will be well as God sees fit.

Am I totally wrong?

#35 petruska

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Posted 16 August 2013 - 12:24 PM

And yes, I hope that Judas Iscariot would be saved but I think I am not enough to pray for him. First I should pray God to have mercy on me since I am the sinner and maybe if God would have mercy even on me, perhaps others have hope as well.

#36 Rdr Andreas

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Posted 16 August 2013 - 12:56 PM

I think what Petruska says is basically correct; St Silouan the Athonite wanted all to be saved but, as Metropolitan Athanasios of Limassol says, what actually happens to any soul is God's business and we should attend to ourselves.



#37 petruska

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Posted 16 August 2013 - 04:41 PM

I hope from the bottom of my heart that we all would be saved. Now the only problem is, probably, how should we attest to it.(I hope I am using the right expression for it)
Perhaps we should pray for all, repent for all and love all and let God do what He wills in us all.

I am sorry if I sound too idealistic.

#38 Herman Blaydoe

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Posted 16 August 2013 - 10:08 PM

I certainly hope for the salvation of all because that is probably the only way I will be saved, but that is God's business, not mine.



#39 Rdr Andreas

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Posted 16 August 2013 - 10:12 PM

'Keep thy mind in hell, and despair not.'



#40 Hieromonk Ambrose

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Posted 17 August 2013 - 06:48 AM

>There is no consensus in the Holy Fathers about whether all in hades (not 'hell') left there.<<<

 

When I was a lad we were taught that Christ was the Conqueror of Hell.  Since then under, I think, the influence of Frs Seraphim Rose and Herman Podmoshensky the cosmology of the after death places and states has changed and "solidified."   Christ is no longer the Conqueror of Hell but He is the Conqueror of Hades







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