The Deification of Man, HH Pope Shenouda III



  • dear remnkemi,
    non scientists really love it.
    i agree it's really annoying, but you, i and the other scientists are not the only people on the planet, so lets chill about it...
    (we're not even in the majority!)
  • So anyway, to recap.  If Christ is like a fiery iron, where the sword represents His humanity and the fire represents His divinity, and we being human and not divine are nothing but iron, when cold iron and fiery iron are united, we being cold are "heated" up.  What does the heat represent?

    It represents the divine nature, from which we get our "warmth" from.  So that is deification in a nutshell.

    Relationally, it is the Holy Spirit in us making us sons of the Father, and so I don't want to divorce this from the idea that we do indeed have a personal relationship with God, but this relationship means He gives Himself totally to us, and we partake of the divine nature because of this relationship, and He lifts us up, or "warms us" by His grace.
  • edited December 2014

    Galatians 2:19-21New King James Version (NKJV)

    19 For I through the law died to the law that I might live to God. 20 I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and thelife which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. 21 I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died in vain.”

  • Thank you for sharing this, and I think it is important to highlight that indeed "it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me".  That is the heart of deification.
  • qawe said:

    Do you have anything to substantiate your claim that I'm an invalid?  Or you do like to come to forums being useless and insulting people?

    To add to @minasoliman's question to you, @Kahan:
    Apart from the heterodox ecclesiology you seem to hold, do you have anything to substantiate your implication that fatherhood renders a person infallible and in no need of forgiveness?
    Do not make conclusions about my understanding of the Church. I am well aware of the positions of HH Pope Shenouda regarding Theosis. Yet I will not go as far as some invalids with inflated egos go and claim to have the power of forgiveness as this punk did above.

    It is ridiculous for a forum poster to say "this is forgivable " and "he is forgiven". When we are talking about a Pope, it becomes stupid.

    One last point:

    If HH taught heresy, for denying theosis is a heresy, why didn't your Holy Synod do something about it? Do you understand the gravity of your position?
  • Forgiveness is human. I forgive you, I forgive my mom, I forgive my dad. I'm not sure Qawe made a conclusion about your understanding, but I will. You don't have a good understanding of a few things. What the Pope is, being the first. He's a human. And he needs forgiveness. If, for example, my friend robs me of some money, I am able (as in, it is within my rights as a human) to forgive him. If the Pope does the same to me (steals some money) the same forgiveness may be afforded him. I am to forgive him. In this situation, the Pope did not rob me of money, but of a proper teaching for which I forgive him. The logic is there. Wrong doing of a person warrants forgiveness from the wronged. You clearly have a messed up ecclesiology where it is somehow wrong to forgive someone above you. 

    Why do you insist on calling people invalids. Firstly, its a pretty weak insult. Like come on, bro. If you're going to insult someone who lovingly forgave someone and who doesn't judge him on his incorrect theology; and if you're going to insult someone calling them "invalid" (clearly going against the Gospel) then go for broke. Use a stronger word and let everyone know that you have no problem insulting but have a hard time forgiving. Its pitiful and unchristian. Grow up and take your insults elsewhere. Your attitude disgusts me. 

    What is so stupid about forgiving a Pope? As far as I see it, it logically follows that if someone makes a mistake, forgiveness is in order. What part do you have a problem with? 
    A) That a pope can make a mistake? If you have a problem with that, you are a heretic. No man is perfect but Christ. 
    B) That a mistake necessitates (on a Christian worldview) forgiveness? If you have a problem with that, you should not even be discussing Theosis since forgiveness is a Godly trait. 
    C) That you believe that forgiveness is a proud thing. As though to forgive, one must be in greater authority. 

    Does the Bishop not ask forgiveness before beginning the Holy Liturgy? Did the Pope himself not, before every anaphora he prayed, humble himself and ask for forgiveness? If the rites of the church incorporate the Pope asking for forgiveness, why is it such an "invalid" thing to do to forgive him? It seems to me that this "punk" you describe was merely living out his prayer. Nice to know what your definition of a "punk" is. Not very good with words, are you?

    H.H. Pope Shenouda did deny Theosis. If this is a heresy, as you say, so be it. As for why the holy Synod did nothing about it, it is not a question that I think we should discuss on a public forum. But lets not pretend that it was such a small task for a synod where >80% of attending Bishops were raised and ordained by HHPS3 to condemn his teaching. Particularly due to the examples that he made of such opposers of Fr. Matta El-Meskeen and Dr. George Bebawy. 

    Yes. I understand the gravity of what I'm saying. But what you don't understand is that the gravity of the situation has no bearing on whether or not the situation is true or false. 


  • edited December 2014
    Look, if it came off as high ego, I apologize.  My intention was to simply to say that even His Holiness can make mistakes, but that he should still be venerated and loved.  When you read about the historical circumstances and lack of patristic sources, that's what I mean when I say it's forgivable.  The same can be said about St. Augustine and how no bishop was going to challenge him directly due to the much greater influence he had on others.  I believe His Holiness was the St. Augustine of today.
  • edited December 2014
    It seems like this is a fight or what I like to call a *challenge* more than a harmless argument. And fights are like completely unnecessary.

    In the end of it all, it leaves both parties feeling insulted and both parties feeling like they gained something out of making the other person feel bad. 

    With this tone of voice, it's not going to go anywhere. It'll just create a larger argument, where you want to prove the other person wrong, and it'll surely not end in peaceful terms. 

    I'm just saying..
    So please don't bite me for this.
  • Kahan,
    I understand your apprehension about claims made against HH Pope Shenouda. I was the most vocal proponent for HH Pope Shenouda during the election process in 2012. I get very upset at the recent trend to vilify HH Pope Shenouda. But Mina was not doing this.

    I think you might be conflating different issues here. This is not about people with inflated egos who claim to have the power of forgiveness. This is about fulfilling our Christian duty to maintain the preaching that was given to us (even before Pope Shenouda). St Paul says "But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let them be under God's curse!" Gal 1:8. Is not an angel or messenger from heaven supposed to be taken seriously. Are not fiery messengers from heaven claiming the truth of God, closer to God than humans, given more credibility than humans? Usually they are. Yet, even an angel from heaven is not infallible. Has not St Paul passed judgment rhetorically on any angel who has preached or will preach a gospel different than his? Is St Paul simply being an egotistical trouble maker? No. Even HH Pope Shenouda, in his book on Judgement, taught us that we have the authority to judge people against the truth. (I can't seem to find HH's book Judge Not Others in English online.)

    Secondly, when Mina said "this is forgivable" or "he is forgiven", I understood it as "we can excuse HH Pope Shenouda's error". It definitely did not mean that a layman has any authority to forgive a clergyman pre or post-mortem. Of course, if Mina meant the second interpretation, it becomes stupid. But I am certain he did not. 

    Thirdly, I agree that the Holy Synod should have said something (back then) or even now. But in the absence of an official declaration of theosis by the Holy Synod, then we can only rely on patristics, Orthodoxy theology in general, and historical discussions. The silence of the Holy Synod does not validate a statement or theology, whether that statement is true or false. 

    Finally, I think you should be careful how you express your zeal. It benefits no one when you come here and hurl offensive insults at someone who said something you disagree with instead of defending why the claim is false on its face value. Place that zeal in a productive manner by discussing theosis, defending your position on theosis and/or your position to support HH Pope Shenouda's position on theosis. (As an admin, this forum will not tolerate any more attacks or personal insults.)
  • edited December 2014
    "It definitely did not mean that a layman has any authority to forgive a clergyman pre or post-mortem. Of course, if Mina meant the second interpretation, it becomes stupid."

    Why does one need some sort of 'authority' to be able to forgive someone else?
  • My question exactly Qawe? What does authority have anything to do with forgiveness. What has rank got to do with forgiving a wrongdoing? Just as a matter of reality. I was going to ask it, but with this new forum system, I have no idea how to quote *wink wink* @minatasgeel :P

  • Even if one is justified in standing up to someone who happens to be of rank, one should try his/her best to maintain some sort of modicum of respect of that rank, even when giving a form of criticism. In a way, perhaps it sounded like I was disrespecting His Holiness, so I want to make it clear that it wasn't my intention and just move on with the topic at hand.
  • @minasoliman and @Kahan,
    minasoliman does certainly have a tone of a know-it-all and strongly sticks up for what he believes, which is certainly commendable, but I don't think in that particular case he came across as or even sounded as though he was of a higher rank than the ex-pope at all.. I believe this is just a case of misunderstanding of people zealously arguing their positions
  • There is a difference between forgiving someone for wrongdoing against you, and forgiving someone for sinning against you. Any layman is able to forgive a clergyman for wronging him. No layman is able to forgive the the clergyman for sinning against him because sinning against the laymen is sinning against God. Only God can forgive sins and He has given clergy this authority to loose and bind sins. Note, not even the clergy have the authority or power to forgive sins. They are only given the authority to loose and bind sin in heaven and earth but God alone absolves sin. 

    In addition, as Mina said, there is no blanket authority to disrespect or ignore the clerical honor. Even St Paul recognized that it is wrong to disrespect the high priest, even when the high priest is the one who has sinned. It's one thing to say or imply Bishop X said something wrong. We all have the authority to do that. It is another thing to say Bishop X is liable to eternal judgment because of his error. It takes the whole synod under the direction of Holy Spirit to do that. It is also another thing to defame Bishop X for his error, which I believe is what Kahan thought was happening.

    The same is true in reverse. It is one thing to say Bishop X is forgiven for his mistake. Again, we all have the authority to search the Truth in all matters and the more we forgive the wrongdoing of others, the more we are forgiven. (The Lord's prayer says "as we forgive our debtors" in NKJV. Notice sin is not used here. In fact, no English translation of Matthew 6:12 has "as we forgive those who trespassed against us" or "as we forgive those who sinned against us"). It is another thing to say Bishop X is absolved of any punishment for his mistake, especially by a layman.
  • The Fraction by St. Cyril (Fraction of “O Lamb of God”)

    O Lamb of God, who through Your sufferings have borne the sins of the world, blot out our iniquities through Your compassion.
    O only-begotten of God, who through Your Blood have cleansed the filth of the world, cleanse the filth of our souls through Your mercies.
    O Christ of God, who through Your death have slain death that had slain all, by Your power raise up the deadness of our souls.
    O You who receive the offerings, who have offered Yourself in place of sinners, accept our repentance, we, who are sinners.
    For without favor have we come forth into Your presence, knocking on the door of Your tender mercies. So, grant us, O You who are rich in mercies, healing out of the treasures of Your remedies.
    Heal, O Compassionate One, our wretched souls by the emollient ointments of Your life-giving Mysteries.
    Cleanse our bodies; wash aways our iniquities; make us worthy of the coming down of Your Holy Spirit upon our souls.
    Enlighten our minds that we may behold Your praiseworthiness. Purify our thoughts and mingle us with Your glory.
    Your love has brought You down to our lowliness; let Your grace raise us up to Your highness.
    Your compassion has compelled You and You were incarnate in our flesh; and You have manifested Your hiddeness openly.
    Manifest in the souls of Your servants the glory of Your life-giving Mysteries.
    At the offering of the sacrifice upon the altar, sin shall cease from our members through Your grace.
    When Your glory comes down upon Your Mysteries, we lift our minds up to behold Your splendor.
    At the turning of the bread and wine into Your body and Blood, our souls shall be turned unto fellowship with Your glory, and our souls shall be united to Your divinity.
    Create in us, O our Lord and our God, a pure heart, and let Your Spirit dwell within us.
    Renew our senses by Your power and make us worthy of Your gift.
    From the cup of Your Blood, we drink; grant us a spiritual taste that we may discern the taste of Your life-giving Mysteries.
    We come forth into Your presence trusting in Your mercy, and You shall dwell in us with love.
    Fill us with Your fear and inflame our hearts with desire for You.
    Place Your grace in us; purify our senses through Your mercy.
    Grant us pure tears and cleanse us from the filth of sin.
    Make us a holy temple for Your dwelling and purified vessels for receiving You, that having tasted of Your Flesh, we may be made worthy to taste Your grace, and having drunk Your Blood, we may be made worthy of the sweetness of Your love.
    You have granted us to eat Your Flesh openly, make us worthy to be united to You secretly (ie. mysteriously).
    You have granted us to drink of the cup of Your Blood openly, make us worthy to mingle with Your purity secretly (ie. mysteriously).
    And as You are one in Your Father and Your Holy Spirit, may we be one in You and You in Us, that Your saying may be fulfilled, “That they may all be one in Us.”
    So that with boldness, we may call God Your Father, a Father to us, and say in an expressive voice,
    Our Father...
  • I actually asked about this fraction a while ago. So by tradition, it is considered by St. Cyril?
  • edited December 2014

    I actually asked about this fraction a while ago. So by tradition, it is considered by St. Cyril?

    Here's the discussion I opened a while back:

    I also haven't heard from coptic_deacon in some time.  I hope we didn't lose him.
  • If you want to be a missionary and you want to save souls, you should avoid confusing people with this Western teachings and ideas that the Holy Synod banned. No one who is a loyal Coptic son or daughter would question the wisdom of this decision. We have a mission to save souls but instead we are tempted by ideas from non-Coptic teachers.

    Our Church banned the teaching because it is mixing up hinduism with Christian faith. No where in the Holy Bible does it support the idea of being dissolved, which is what the supporters of this western and pagan idea are teaching. Some of the supporters of this new teaching also deny the important teaching on Original Sin. Our Church has preserved the proper teaching and has not been influenced by the Western ideas.

    For a proper Coptic teaching you should read Deification of Man part 1 and 2 and also listen to this sermon:
  • Asking your prayers, everyone :)

    @coptic mission, Please do not call my father, St. Athanasius the Apostolic a hindu. And while there please also do not call my father St. Gregory the Theologian a "westerner"

    Asking your prayers, everyone

  • Does this mean we believe in theosis? I know that's generally an Eastern Orthodox concept. Is that the same thing as deification?
  • edited January 2015

    I'm sorry, but I do not consider that priest a source of Coptic Orthodoxy


    Theosis, or deification, or divinization, or theopoeisis are all the same thing, and are all the cornerstone of Orthodox soteriology. It is not just an EO concept. It is a Coptic concept.
  • I really wish Iqbal was here right now.
    He educated us on all these issues. He didn't have a problem at all with the position the Pope held concerning eating "Divinity".
    He was far more educated in Theology than myself. 

    Now, I love Minasoliman and Ray - they are my brothers, but to be fair fellas, this is a serious issue. I dislike very much the way in which Kahan has conducted himself so far in this forum; but he raises a point that is valid: You are going against, if not misrepresenting the 117th patriarch of the Coptic Orthodox Church. The picture being painted of him thus far is less than complimentary. 

    This is huge.

    This could be the forum to explain and educate people, what has been said so far is so grave, I think its best to have someone like Iqbal just respond; or simply close such threads. You cannot expect anyone Coptic to come here, read comments like this and go away thinking that His Patriarch, whom they loved, has been accused of heresy by his own faithful.

    If I had proposed anything of the sort, I'd have been banned from this forum. 

    This topic has to be dealt with once and for all.

    Mina / Ray: Read your statements carefully, you cannot expect any Coptic person, with any love for his Church, not to find any of this offensive? Perhaps this why Kahan has responded with such harshness? 
  • "We do not say that the nature of the Word was altered when he became flesh. Neither do we say that the Word was changed into a complete man of soul and body. We say rather that the Word by having united to himself hypostatically flesh animated by a rational soul, inexplicably and incomprehensibly became man." (Cyril, Ep. 4, Second Letter to Nestorius)

    Concerning this quote, Dr Stephen Davis writes in "The Early Coptic Papacy The Egyptian Church and Its Leadership in Late Antiquity" that:

    For Cyril, it was this complete union of the divine and human in Christ that made it possible to call Mary the Mother of God. According to the “economy” of the Incarnation, what was attributable to Christ’s humanity was also attributable to his divinity, and vice versa.

    The nature of this union also had profound implications for human salvation. Here, Cyril’s Christology relied heavily on Athanasius’ doctrine of the Incarnation. According to Athanasius, the life-giving Word, by uniting itself with a human body and by divinizing that body, salvifically transformed all of human nature. For Cyril as well as Athanasius, human access to salvation was made possible only by participation in the divine (or divinized) body of Christ.

    This christological logic, so tied to soteriology (“the science of salvation”), helps explain what was at stake for Cyril in his opposition to Nestorius. Cyril complained that Nestorius’ doctrine divided Christ into two persons, or alternatively, that it merely suggested a loose conjunction of two persons in Christ. Cyril’s fundamental concern was, ultimately, that such a Christology might undermine the essential unity of Christ and thereby jeopardize human access to salvation.
  • edited January 2015
    Also in regards to the iron and fire analogy:

    "To this we say, ‘Indeed, the difference between the two statements is that the action of something upon its own essence is impossible. For if one thing grants to another thing its essence, in the sense that it is generous to it in its contact with it, it is not impossible for us to find many things that grant to other things their essences, just as in the case where fire is present in iron and is united with it, and the iron becomes alight through its union with the fire, and does what fire does in terms of heating and burning.

    In the same way, the four properties—heat and cold, moisture and dryness— give to material bodies their essences by coming into union with them and by attaching themselves to them, so that the property particular to them has its origin in the material bodies with which they are composed. And in the same way, the things facing mirrors give their images to them, and the mirrors are ‘imaged’ by them. And those turning to the mirrors see the things facing them as images of these same things, and (they see) everything that happens to them with regard to movement and coming to rest.

    The uncertainty of this contradiction is revealed especially in our subject, by the fact that we are clarifying how the union of the Creator (may he be exalted!) with humankind is possible. And we say, ‘Indeed, it is known that comprehends the Creator, and the meaning of his comprehension of him is that the mind of the human being is ‘imaged’ by the image of the Creator. The Creator is not disgusting and material, for his image is part of his essence—his image must (in fact) be his essence—and his essence is (identifiable with) the mind of the human being. For in reality the mind and that which is comprehended (by the mind) are actually one subject, [one in the subject (i.e. one in subjectivity)] just as Aristotle made clear: it is necessary that the human being, when he comprehends the Creator, be united with him...""

    By Al-Mu’taman ibn al-Assal, which can be found in Dr Stephen Davis' "Coptic Christology in Practice: Incarnation and Divine Participation in Late Antique and Medieval Egypt"
  • edited January 2015
    I, again, will be brief since I don't think it will serve much of a purpose in changing your mind to expand further. When it comes to issues such as the theological views of the late pope, its an issue that no one will be convinced of until they do the research themselves. I encourage you to do just that. 

    No, I am not at all mis-representing his views. Yes I stand firmly against them and consider them wrong. They were incorrect teachings and need to be corrected. Any attempt to call them misrepresentations of his views are merely attempts at vindicating him with no interest in assessing true theology. If the picture being painted of H.H. is far less than complimentary, it is not due to a statement that he was incorrect. He is a man, much like the thousands of other Bishops of history. Men make mistakes and he made his. The issue is not that we are incorrect or rude for saying the pope was wrong, but that there are those who equate him to God who cannot make mistakes. But yes he can make mistakes. Yes he is only human. This is not an insult, but a reality. 

    Heresy is an interesting word, Zoxa. But to be totally honest, neither I nor Mina used that word to describe H.H. But what now? I mean have you researched the issue? Because if you do, it is quite clear that a mistake was made by Pope Shenouda which lead to a mass rejection of theosis. This is not to demonize him! But if I were to teach Sunday school and speak about Theosis (the cornerstone of my faith), and someone opposes me saying that Pope Shenouda disagreed with this. I have one of three options. 

    1) Tell them that I was wrong and that Theosis is indeed a heresy (and thus oppose a theology embraced, and lived by 2000 years of christ living fathers and mothers as well as 116 patriarchs, as well as reject the truth of the gift which God died to give me!)

    2) Tell them that it was just a misunderstanding (leading to the furtherance of the confusion that we have now, and rob them of a true understanding of their worth and value as humans.)

    3) Tell them and convince them that the Pope was wrong (and hit two birds with one stone: stop them from worshipping the pope as a demi God, and teach them correct theology.) I prefer this option

    It may seem presumptuous for me to say H.H. the Pope was wrong. But its not me. Dr. George Bebawy is a Ph.D. He would agree. Dr. Joseph Faltas being the same. These are not uneducated people. Tayeb forget those men. They're grumpy old theologians! They don't have the spirit of God like H.H. Pope Shenouda (I'm playing devils advocate.) The following saints stand in diametrically opposed positions to H.H.: Athanasius, Cyril, Basil, Gregory Nazianzen, Bishoy El-Bushy, and the very hymns of praise of our church! All I'm saying is that it is no great deal for me to say a man was wrong. Thats what men do! They get things wrong. It is, however, a great deal to call the history of our church and its entire traditional teachings, lineage and dogma upon which 2000 years of theology all wrong. They weren't. And honesty dictates that when two opposing teachings exist, both cannot be correct, and one must be wrong. How is it incorrect, thus to call a man wrong and somehow OK to stand against the teaching of Theosis. Without Theosis, Christ's incarnation to our world, his crucifixion, and his resurrection mean nothing more than a vacation to a really bad place, having the vacation end badly, and being given first-class tickets home as compensation. 

  • Bishop Bulus al-Bushi - 'On the Incarnation'

    Chapter Eight: God Granted Us Participation in the Body of Christ

    "Then in his favour he added a confirmation. He willed to grant us participation in that holy body and a connection with it by a most excellent spiritual kinship that transcends the bodily kinship, to the extent that the eternal life which that body acquired becomes in us completely and rightly natural.

    God gave to us first the Holy Spirit through baptism, the Spirit that he had extracted from Adam the day that he ate from the branch of disobedience. Through the Spirit he provided us with the second birth for our inheritance of the kingdom, just as he said, ‘Unless one has been born of the water and the spirit, he will not see the kingdom of God.’

    Then, afterwards, he gave us an additional (sign of his) favour, over and above the state Adam was in before his error: he gave us his life-giving body. As he said, ‘I am the life-giving bread, which came down from heaven. Whoever eats of this bread will live forever!’ Then he told us what the bread is when he said, ‘The bread that I give is my body, which I offer up for the life of the world.’ Indeed, he even added to that another announcement, when he said, ‘If you have not eaten the body of the Son of Man, nor drunk his blood, there is no eternal life in you.’ His statement, ‘in you’, means that it (eternal life) comes to existence in your essential nature. It is not external to you, nor is it alien to you. He settled that matter and said, ‘Because my body is true food, and my blood is true drink, whoever has eaten my body and has drunk my blood remains in me, and I in him.’ As for his statement, ‘true food’, he said that because his divinity is united with his body. He has been united with the holy bread and has transformed it into his body in truth and not merely in likeness. Then he said the greatest thing, when he made the statement, ‘Just as the living Father sent me, and I have life on account of the

    Father, so too whoever eats me lives on account of me.’ He did not need to say in this instance, ‘whoever eats my body’, because he already had established that in the preceding statement. He said first, ‘the living bread’, and informed us that that bread was truly his body. Then he said third, ‘whoever eats me’. He means by this that he is God incarnate, and his divinity is not differentiated from his humanity. Whoever partakes (of the Eucharist) in a worthy manner and with faith, God will reside in him and give him the life that he gave to the body united to him. The apostle said, ‘He is ready to change the body of our weakness and transform it into something resembling the body of his glory, as the work of his powerful hand to which everything is devoted in service. As for his statement, ‘the Father lives, and I live on account of the Father’, (its meaning is), just as was introduced earlier in the first part of this book, that he is perfection from perfection, and ‘light from light, life from life, true God from true God, begotten not made, equal to the Father in essence’.

    Whoever does not have his share of faith in him, nor has received baptism, nor has participation in his living thrones, also does not truly have a share in the inheritance of eternal life, but rather is completely alien to it altogether, because ‘flesh and blood’ (as the Apostle Paul said) ‘does not inherit the kingdom of God, and the changeable does not inherit what does not change’. Indeed, there does not reside in a human being anything that is more exalted than him—that which is more exalted is the Holy Spirit and the living thrones that belong to God the Word who is their master and creator. Therefore, such a one has no share or inheritance in that eternal kingdom! Now as for the ones who died first, he came and saved their souls through his own sacrifice on their behalf, since they relied on the hope of the promise. As for the believers, he gave them his thrones on account of their (way of) life, as he testified, saying, ‘Whoever believes in me, if he dies, he will live. And whoever lives and believes in me, will never suffer death.’ In this statement, he gathered together the first and the last."
  • Dear Ray,

    May I encourage you to read Fr. Peter Farrington's response to my question:

    So, I ask the same questions as everyone else here. I don't insist on my opinion, but I am happy to show my ignorance as the idea of living in the truth is a greater trade off than suffering from losing face. 

    It would be arrogant of me to insist on my ways after having taken up a tremendous effort from Fr Peter Farrington and Iqbal. Have you noticed how sloppy my grammar is at times? I just type and send out a message and its really quite humbling to receive a response from someone who has taken the time to articulate, explain and educate me. There's NO point in my asking questions if at the end of it, Im going to leave with the same knowledge I had before I asked! That's just wasting people's time. 

    If you read Fr Peter Farrington's response, he is very clear. He is an admin on here, and furthermore, his thoughts are exactly in line with H.H Pope Shenouda's! 

    We do not eat Divinity! 

  • Cyril, where did you get this information on Bishop Boulos al-Bush?
  • Hi Rem it's from the same book "Coptic Christology in Practice: Incarnation and Divine Participation in Late Antique and Medieval Egypt" by Dr Stephen Davis
  • To deny deification is to deny that God has power to save or that God has power to unite Himself to us. Deification is not the eating of divinity as if the divine nature is material. That is a misrepresentation of HH Pope Shenouda that he used against Abouna Matta Al Maskeen. Abouna Matta however never said that. Where does he say that we eat the divinity?

    I know Iqbal and Fr. Peter Farrington very well. I have had numerous correspondences with them privately and publicly. They will agree with me on this issue (actually they also were concerned HH did not fully comprehend the Patristic dogma of deification). We partake of the divine nature because God became man. That much is true and is repeatedly confirmed by the Church fathers.
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