1 Tim 2:15 has been labeled as one of the truly strange verses of the Bible, and appropriately so. I know of no one who takes it “literally” (although I assume that someone somewhere has tried to do so).
But actually it does illustrate an interesting concept in Greek, and that is the overlapping of semantic ranges. There are two Greek words meaning “to save.” The most common is σωζω. It has a wide range of meaning, from “to preserve or rescue fr. natural dangers and afflictions, save, keep from harm, preserve, rescue” to “to save or preserve from transcendent danger or destruction, save/preserve from eternal death” (BDAG). σωζω is the normal word for spiritual salvation.
Would love to see some input on this.
The Beatitudes are a series of blessings pronounced by Christ in Matthew 5:1-12. The term Beatitudes comes from the Latin beati (“blessed”) which begins each verse from 5:3 to 5:12 in the Latin Vulgate.
The Beatitudes are included in the Divine Liturgy in Slavic practice, in Byzantine monastic practice, in the Typika, and in other services. In the context of the Liturgy, they form the third antiphon. During the singing of this Third Antiphon, the Little Entrance is begun.
The Beatitudes begin with a phrase taken from Luke 23:42:
In Thy kingdom remember us, O Lord, when Thou comest in Thy kingdom.
They then continue:
Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.
Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are you when men revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for your reward is great in heaven. (Matthew 5:2-12; Cf Luke 6:20-26)
And end with
"Glory… Both now…".
In the Liturgy, there are troparia appointed to be read between these verses that vary depending on the typikon. These troparia can also read in Typika when it is done the place of a Liturgy that the Typikon calls for.
When the Typikon does not appoint a Liturgy and Typika is done, the Beatitudes are completed as follows:
Remember us, O Lord, when Thou comest in Thy kingdom.
Remember us, O Master, when Thou comest in Thy kingdom.
Remember us, O Holy One, when Thou comest in Thy kingdom.
The beatitudes are considered by the Church, to contain the most concise summary of the spiritual life of man. They are an introduction to the teachings of Jesus. In the Orthodox Divine Liturgy, the beatitudes are chanted when the Book of the Gospels is carried in solemn procession to the sanctuary to be proclaimed as the Word of God to the faithful. Thus it is the clear teaching of the Gospel and the Church that one enters into the mysteries of Christ and the Kingdom of God only by way of following the Lord’s teachings in the beatitudes.
It all seemed so easy when I was a young student activist crying out, “End child labour now!” It didn’t take too much thought to get up in youth group and share the latest online petition, or show that moving video on YouTube. The problem seemed clear-cut, the solutions obvious. But that’s all changed now. The above photo was taken literally 10 metres from where I am now sitting at my desk and writing this article for you. It’s of a young Nepali boy, who is only 13 years old, performing the dangerous task of breaking up rocks with a crude hammer for over eight hours a day…
This week I have been completely at a loss as to what to do for this young guy, which has left me feeling confused, frustrated and pretty powerless to be honest. I mean, for crying out loud, my wife and I are Christian aid and development workers!
A tough article about the realities and complexities of child labor.
In other words, by reflecting upon the smashing of the idols are we really just doing the equivalent of having a nice daydream in which we imagine being freed from a horrible job so that we can wake up refreshed and actually go to it?
For dreams, at their worst, act to make our reality bearable.
Interesting post. Applicable in a variety of ways.
It’s understandably interesting that so much atonement theory revolves around the Cross. However, approaching the Gospels from a narrative perspective, it wasn’t the atonement alone that caused any change in the lives of the Apostles, but it was their experience of Jesus after his resurrection. Recall the two on the road to Emmaus, Thomas, and Peter — it was their belief and interaction with a resurrected Messiah that initiated their change. I’m beginning to lean, then, that if an atonement theory does not discuss the resurrection, it may be ‘incomplete’