Icons are necessary for salvation, apparently

Septextura

Active member
The keyword there is "graven".
Ikons are not graven, but painted. They include mosaics and frescoes.

A cross is an image. †
That's just silly.

Icons were mere religious art until Justinian I and his wife Theodora popularized them immensely, becoming idols worshipped in every home across the empire. His rule began in 527 AD and he built the Hagia Sofia in 532–537. God's first reaction to his influence in Christianity was the Justinian plague.

The Plague of Justinian or Justinianic Plague (541–549 AD) was the beginning of the first plague pandemic, the first Old World pandemic of plague, the contagious disease caused by the bacterium Yersinia pestis. The disease afflicted the entire Mediterranean Basin, Europe, and the Near East, severely affecting the Sasanian Empire and the Roman Empire and especially its capital, Constantinople.] The plague is named for the Roman emperor in Constantinople, Justinian I (r. 527–565), who according to his court historian Procopius contracted the disease and recovered in 542, at the height of the epidemic which killed about a fifth of the population in the imperial capital.

Did Byzantium stop? Nope.

God raises Islam in 610–632 AD and pounds at their gates "repent, repent" for the next 800 years.

Does Constantinople or Rome repent? No.

Constantinople falls in 1453 AD to the Turks. All the church manuscripts are evacuated to Western Europe.

God gives us the printing press via Gutenberg in 1440. Erasmus creates the Textus Receptus in 1516. Luther in 1517 begins the Reformation. Tyndale translates the Bible in English in 1525. God raises the British to create the first global empire. The Bible goes everywhere, spreading God's words like wildfire.

I'm now quoting you Scripture in English, the language of the world, as Muslims pray in the Hagia Sofia.

Daniel 2:21
And he changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings: he giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge to them that know understanding:

Isaiah 40:8
The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever.
 
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rakovsky

Member
  • The keyword there is "graven". A cross is an image. †
That's just silly.
No, because the anti-icon idea is that Christians should not be making images, AKA "icons". A cross is an icon.

Maybe you are not aware of it, but the letters of the original Hebrew "alphabet" used in the time of David were actually pictograms. The first letter of the Hebrew "alphabet" was Aleph, meaning ox, and the second was Bet, meaning house. The Aleph's arms were the horns of the ox. The letter is related to our modern English "A".

 

Septextura

Active member
No, because the anti-icon idea is that Christians should not be making images, AKA "icons". A cross is an icon.

Maybe you are not aware of it, but the letters of the original Hebrew "alphabet" used in the time of David were actually pictograms. The first letter of the Hebrew "alphabet" was Aleph, meaning ox, and the second was Bet, meaning house. The Aleph's arms were the horns of the ox. The letter is related to our modern English "A".


Exodus 20
1 And God spake all these words, saying,
2 I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:



Zephaniah 1
1 The word of the LORD which came unto Zephaniah the son of Cushi, the son of Gedaliah, the son of Amariah, the son of Hizkiah, in the days of Josiah the son of Amon, king of Judah.
2 I will utterly consume all things from off the land, saith the LORD.
3 I will consume man and beast; I will consume the fowls of the heaven, and the fishes of the sea, and the stumblingblocks with the wicked; and I will cut off man from off the land, saith the LORD.
4 I will also stretch out mine hand upon Judah, and upon all the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and I will cut off the remnant of Baal from this place, and the name of the Chemarims with the priests;
5 And them that worship the host of heaven upon the housetops; and them that worship and that swear by the LORD, and that swear by Malcham;

If you have icons of archangel Michael or Gabriel in your home, or on church building walls, to God it's no different than having images of Baal or Moloch.

Do you know that the Sinai Christ Pantocrator icon was commissioned by Justinian I to portray his Miaphysitism beliefs? Additional trivia to my previous post.

This position—called miaphysitism, or single-nature doctrine—was interpreted by the Roman and Greek churches as a heresy called monophysitism, the belief that Christ had only one nature, which was divine.

And they drew Him doing the hand of Sabazius. Utter blasphemy.


 
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Theophilos

New member

God destroyed their empire and enslaved them to Islam, which despises graven images. The flag of Constantinople is now the symbol for all Islam. When will these people learn?
There are actually two separate issues that the seventh council addressed. The first was whether use of religious images violated the commandments against idolatry. The council affirmed that use of religious images did not violate the commandments.

That understanding actually predates Christianity. The Jewish temple was filled with religious imagery. Excavations of a third-century synagogue in Syria shows that the walls were covered with iconography similar to that of modern Eastern churches. For details see:

The second issue was whether use of religious images should be a part of personal and church devotions. This is more a question of church discipline. Worshipping together requires some set of rules; the question is similar to traffic laws that are necessary for travel. It also made sense since books were very expensive and literacy was very limited; icons were an important way to instruct in the faith.

As far as the biblical basis for the authority of the council to make these decisions, see Acts Chapter 15. It describes the Council of Jerusalem, which established rules for gentile converts to Christianity. It ends with a letter from the council with this statement, which shows that the Holy Spirit worked through the council:

. . . it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things: Acts 15:28 KJV
 
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Beloved Daughter

Active member
There are actually two separate issues that the seventh council addressed. The first was whether use of religious images violated the commandments against idolatry. The council affirmed that use of religious images did not violate the commandments.

That understanding actually predates Christianity. The Jewish temple was filled with religious imagery. Excavations of a third-century synagogue in Syria shows that the walls were covered with iconography similar to that of modern Eastern churches. For details see:

The second issue was whether use of religious images should be a part of personal and church devotions. This is more a question of church discipline. Worshipping together requires some set of rules; the question is similar to traffic laws that are necessary for travel. It also made sense since books were very expensive and literacy was very limited; icons were an important way to instruct in the faith.

As far as the biblical basis for the authority of the council to make these decisions, see Acts Chapter 15. It describes the Council of Jerusalem, which established rules for gentile converts to Christianity. It ends with a letter from the council with this statement, which shows that the Holy Spirit worked through the council:

. . . it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things: Acts 15:28 KJV

The Jerusalem Council stated exactly zilch about icons. It was to take control over the laws the Jews had always followed, and the customs from the Gentiles.

This is where Paul was the Apostle to the Gentiles, and Peter to the Jews.
 

Septextura

Active member
There are actually two separate issues that the seventh council addressed. The first was whether use of religious images violated the commandments against idolatry. The council affirmed that use of religious images did not violate the commandments.

That understanding actually predates Christianity. The Jewish temple was filled with religious imagery. Excavations of a third-century synagogue in Syria shows that the walls were covered with iconography similar to that of modern Eastern churches. For details see:

The second issue was whether use of religious images should be a part of personal and church devotions. This is more a question of church discipline. Worshipping together requires some set of rules; the question is similar to traffic laws that are necessary for travel. It also made sense since books were very expensive and literacy was very limited; icons were an important way to instruct in the faith.

As far as the biblical basis for the authority of the council to make these decisions, see Acts Chapter 15. It describes the Council of Jerusalem, which established rules for gentile converts to Christianity. It ends with a letter from the council with this statement, which shows that the Holy Spirit worked through the council:

. . . it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things: Acts 15:28 KJV

Can you imagine Old Testament Jews slapping pictures of Abraham, Moses, Ezra and Sarah in the tabernacle or the following 2 temples? How would God Almighty Jehova react?

Councils you say? Make one to return the destroyed Byzantium that God gave to Islam.
 

Theophilos

New member
The Jewish temple included statues of two cherubs with images of angels carved into the walls.

For the inner sanctuary he made a pair of cherubim out of olive wood, each ten cubits high. One wing of the first cherub was five cubits long, and the other wing five cubits—ten cubits from wing tip to wing tip. . . On the walls all around the temple, in both the inner and outer rooms, he carved cherubim, palm trees and open flowers. 1 Kings 6 23-24, 29
 
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Bonnie

Well-known member
(chuckle) talk about "Straining out the gnat, and eating the camel"!!!
I see nothing wrong with paintings that illustrate stories from the Bible, or even in stained glass windows, in a church for beautification, and as a visual reminder of what God has done for us. This would have been helpful hundreds of years ago, when most people could not read or write.

Our last church had a series of small stained glass windows, illustrating various stories from the Bible, both OT and NT. It culminated in the largest one, behind the pulpit, of a three-d image of the stone rolled away from the tomb, light beaming forth from inside, showing it was empty, emphasizing Jesus' resurrection. But such should never be venerated. And we didn't, either. Why should we venerate objects? We don't need them for salvation. All we need is grace through faith in Christ Jesus our Lord, and what He did for us on the cross.
 
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Septextura

Active member
The Jewish temple included statues of two cherubs with images of angels carved into the walls.

For the inner sanctuary he made a pair of cherubim out of olive wood, each ten cubits high. One wing of the first cherub was five cubits long, and the other wing five cubits—ten cubits from wing tip to wing tip. . . On the walls all around the temple, in both the inner and outer rooms, he carved cherubim, palm trees and open flowers. 1 Kings 6 23-24, 29

Did jews keep paintings of the 2 generic decorative cherubs in their homes and burn incense to? What were their names? Cherub 1 and Cherub 2?
 

Theophilos

New member
The ancient Jews burnt incense in the temple and knelt in prayer towards the temple that was full of religious images.

Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house; and his windows being open in his chamber toward Jerusalem, he kneeled upon his knees three times a day, and prayed, and gave thanks before his God, as he did aforetime. Daniel 6:10

The Old Testament prophesized about gentiles offering incense and pure offerings. That is what happens at every divine liturgy.

My name will be great among the nations, from where the sun rises to where it sets. In every place incense and pure offerings will be brought to me, because my name will be great among the nations," says the LORD Almighty. Malichi 1:11
 

Cynthia

Member
Many people could not read, or had no access to scriptures to read for themselves. Churches, even catacombs had paintings of beloved saints and paintings of biblical events to help bring to memory the scriptures that described the events.

The problem was 'falling down and worshipping them"!

LXX Exodus 20:3-6 "You shall have no other gods before Me. You shall not make for yourself an idol or a likeness of anything in heaven above, or in the earth beneath, or in the waters under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, recompensing the sins of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generation of those who hate Me; but showing mercy to thousands to those who love Me and keep My commandments."

The tabernacle and the temple all had images in them, both woven in the curtains, carved into the doors and wall panels, and especially on the lid of the ark of the covenant, the cherubim with wings etc. Made of wood and overlaid with gold. They were NOT worshipped.

Again, the problem of not understanding the spirit of the law.

Whomever it was that said they were required for worship had invested heavily in the icon production industry.

Icons are not wicked. Worshipping an icon would be wicked. Carving the cherubim was not wicked, Worshipping the carving would be.
The difference is clear. That is that.
 

Septextura

Active member
Many people could not read, or had no access to scriptures to read for themselves. Churches, even catacombs had paintings of beloved saints and paintings of biblical events to help bring to memory the scriptures that described the events.

A liturgy means public reading of God's words to the saints, just like it was done in synagogues. I encourage you to go to an Eastern Orthodox liturgy and see for yourself how they do it.

Everything is sung and absolutely undiscernible to the people. No one has the slightest clue what the people in costumes are saying or actually doing. It's all choregraphed superstitious religious rites, bombarding the senses with sounds, smells and pictures, but no knowledge. No words of God are presented plainly to the saints like Christ himself read Isaiah in the synagogue.

EO may do it in Greek or old church Slavonic, and RCC may do it in Latin. If the undiscernible singing didn't envelop you in a fog of mystical ignorance, then doing it in dead languages certainly will. In case you thought it's just a byproduct of outdated traditions, ask yourself why these religions still discourage and for ages directly forbid their flocks to read the word of God and study it on their own.

If someone isn't born again of the Holy Spirit of God, but they are religious and superstitious, they will not gravitate to the experience barren churches of Reformed Protestantism. They will either go to entertainment driven megachurches like Hillsong, or go back to the original simulations of religiosity - EO and RCC. I can imagine what great shows they would put on back when Babylon was at its peak.
 

Septextura

Active member


Theodora as Mary in the church of Ravenna (540-547) As Hunt (2006) indicated, she is holding the “blood of Christ” which is only to be officiated by a high priest and they hold open for her the veil so that she can enter the Holy of Holies. She has a halo resembling Maria and there is also Venus, whom she adored. She is wearing many jewelry. Procopius described her as a circus performer and a whore who then later married Justinian in 525 and had herself crowned in 527 with Justinian as empress (Hunt 2006).



Justinian is carrying the “bread of life” basket for the Eucharist while his wife has the chalice of wine Justinian fulfills the high priestly role here (Hunt 2006).

Theodora: the empress from the brothel
Actress, prostitute and empress of Rome – Theodora's life is perfect for fiction

These two popularized icon worship. Did God approve?


 

Cynthia

Member
A liturgy means public reading of God's words to the saints, just like it was done in synagogues. I encourage you to go to an Eastern Orthodox liturgy and see for yourself how they do it.

Everything is sung and absolutely undiscernible to the people. No one has the slightest clue what the people in costumes are saying or actually doing. It's all choregraphed superstitious religious rites, bombarding the senses with sounds, smells and pictures, but no knowledge. No words of God are presented plainly to the saints like Christ himself read Isaiah in the synagogue.

EO may do it in Greek or old church Slavonic, and RCC may do it in Latin. If the undiscernible singing didn't envelop you in a fog of mystical ignorance, then doing it in dead languages certainly will. In case you thought it's just a byproduct of outdated traditions, ask yourself why these religions still discourage and for ages directly forbid their flocks to read the word of God and study it on their own.

If someone isn't born again of the Holy Spirit of God, but they are religious and superstitious, they will not gravitate to the experience barren churches of Reformed Protestantism. They will either go to entertainment driven megachurches like Hillsong, or go back to the original simulations of religiosity - EO and RCC. I can imagine what great shows they would put on back when Babylon was at its peak.
My experience has been that in the local Greek Orthodox Church, some of the liturgy is spoken or chanted in Greek, and other parts are in English. In the local Antiochian Orthodox Church, some of the liturgy is spoken or chanted in Lebanese, and some in English. I have not visited the Russian Orthodox Church, but I suspect it would be partial Russian and partial English. The classroom teaching is in English.

Everyone I witnessed seemed to know exactly what was going on. Your generalizations show your experience was a poor one.

I have also visited a large Lutheran Church for a Christmas service, and it was in German! So many of the older members of the congregation speak German and they were so happy to hear the service in their language. To them it was beautiful. To me it was not because I didn't understand it, as I didn't understand the Greek or the Lebanese either!

In the classroom teaching for 'seekers' at the Antiochian Orthodox Church, it was in English and every single one had a Bible and if they didn't they looked on their neighbors copy or used their cell phone Bible app. They absolutely did NOT discourage reading and studying the word of God. This is in Oklahoma City by the way.
 

Septextura

Active member
My experience has been that in the local Greek Orthodox Church, some of the liturgy is spoken or chanted in Greek, and other parts are in English. In the local Antiochian Orthodox Church, some of the liturgy is spoken or chanted in Lebanese, and some in English. I have not visited the Russian Orthodox Church, but I suspect it would be partial Russian and partial English. The classroom teaching is in English.

Everyone I witnessed seemed to know exactly what was going on. Your generalizations show your experience was a poor one.

I have also visited a large Lutheran Church for a Christmas service, and it was in German! So many of the older members of the congregation speak German and they were so happy to hear the service in their language. To them it was beautiful. To me it was not because I didn't understand it, as I didn't understand the Greek or the Lebanese either!

In the classroom teaching for 'seekers' at the Antiochian Orthodox Church, it was in English and every single one had a Bible and if they didn't they looked on their neighbors copy or used their cell phone Bible app. They absolutely did NOT discourage reading and studying the word of God. This is in Oklahoma City by the way.

If this is the case, American EO's certainly deviate from the typical in Europe. I've never seen an EO or RCC classroom either.

After Vatican II the RCC has moved towards English mass, which traditional Catholics seem to disapprove of.
 
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