Author Topic: Athanasian Creed  (Read 2023 times)

peter_speckhard

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Re: Athanasian Creed
« Reply #15 on: May 25, 2021, 03:55:01 PM »
The Koine Greek for confession is homologia = same word; or, same say.  What we as church say in faith is said before God in addition to others who are gathered in the assembly.  God, hearing that, responds with the same word back to His Body, the church.
I’ve heard it said of confessing our faith that God speaks and we respond by repeating His Word back to Him. I’ve never heard it expressed the other way, that we speak and God responds.

Weedon

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Re: Athanasian Creed
« Reply #16 on: May 25, 2021, 04:00:19 PM »
Pete,

Isn’t that what our Lord said, though? Matthew 10:32 “Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven.”

peter_speckhard

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Re: Athanasian Creed
« Reply #17 on: May 25, 2021, 04:02:44 PM »
Pete,

Isn’t that what our Lord said, though? Matthew 10:32 “Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven.”
I don’t think that is the same thing. Jesus confessing us before God the Father as we confess Jesus before the world is different than us confessing to God and God responding by giving us Jesus.

Weedon

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Re: Athanasian Creed
« Reply #18 on: May 25, 2021, 04:10:02 PM »
I didn’t take George’s words that way, fwiw.

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Athanasian Creed
« Reply #19 on: May 25, 2021, 07:16:25 PM »
The Koine Greek for confession is homologia = same word; or, same say.  What we as church say in faith is said before God in addition to others who are gathered in the assembly.  God, hearing that, responds with the same word back to His Body, the church.


ὁμολογία in its classical meaning was "agreement" or "having a common view/opinion." It was about two sides coming to the same thoughts/words. It is the word used for the "terms" of a surrender after a war.


The prefix, ὁμο-, carries the sense of "together with."


Lowe & Nida state about translating this (and related words):


It is often extremely difficult, if not impossible, to translate these words by the usual expression for confess, since this would usually imply that one has done something wrong. It is normally necessary, therefore, to employ quite a different type of relationship, usually involving a public utterance and an expression of confidence or allegiance.


(I note that they worked with the American Bible Society on the Good News Bible and the Contemporary English Version, two modern translations designed for those who are not familiar with the Bible or the Christian faith.)
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Athanasian Creed
« Reply #20 on: May 25, 2021, 07:24:16 PM »
We’ll be confessing it; we do each year.

And I think it’s important to front up to the fact that discomfort with the Creed’s assertions runs smack dab into the fact that its conclusion is a paraphrase of Jesus’ own words in John 5; and its teaching on the judgment in general is of a piece with St. Paul’s clear expression in 2 Corinthians 5:10  For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.

Our people are in desperate need of hearing these truths confessed AND taught. If our concept of “Gospel” doesn’t have room for the words of Jesus and Paul, the problem is not with the words of Jesus or Paul as confessed in the Athanasian Creed!


I'm not so sure about the connection with John 5:29bc. A few Latin words are the same (in boldface), but others express quite different ideas.


Vulgate:
qui bona fecerunt, in resurrectionem vitae;
qui vero mala egerunt, in resurrectionem judicii.


Athanasian:
Et qui bona egerunt, ibunt in vitam aeternam:
qui vero mala, in ignem aeternum.


The "resurrection" in John disappeared in the creed, (or was replaced by "eternal").
The "judgment" of John became "fire" (i.e., the punishment) in the creed.
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Rob Morris

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Re: Athanasian Creed
« Reply #21 on: May 25, 2021, 11:13:44 PM »
We read the Athanasian Creed responsively, after brief introductory comments explaining a bit about its historicity and the near-poetry of its repetitions. Pretty much every year someone will mention how much they appreciate it. I have even had people ask if we could do it with more frequency somehow.

Which hopefully overcomes the comic my then-thirteen-year-old son drew of a sanctuary full of people snoozing as the Pastor finishes the "Anesthesian" Creed.

George Rahn

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Re: Athanasian Creed
« Reply #22 on: May 26, 2021, 01:03:24 AM »
The Koine Greek for confession is homologia = same word; or, same say.  What we as church say in faith is said before God in addition to others who are gathered in the assembly.  God, hearing that, responds with the same word back to His Body, the church.
I’ve heard it said of confessing our faith that God speaks and we respond by repeating His Word back to Him. I’ve never heard it expressed the other way, that we speak and God responds.

It’s circular, as in the Matthew text which Pr. Weedon mentioned.

Rev. Spaceman

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Re: Athanasian Creed
« Reply #23 on: May 28, 2021, 09:09:15 PM »
We use it every year on Trinity Sunday. We break it up into three parts. I view it as an important teaching opportunity. I take the time to explain the history behind it, how it emerged as a response to the threat posed to the faith by the Arian Goths. I believe it needs to be understood in that spirit. The point is not to say that intellectual understanding of the Trinity is what saves. It was emphasizing that explicit rejection of the faith confessed is serious indeed.

We've talked about this topic before, but rather than resurrect an old buried thread I'm starting this one fresh to discuss Trinity Sunday and whether people plan to use the Athanasian Creed. What are the pros and cons of using it, especially if the sermon is not totally or in part devoted to explaining some of the parts of it that on the surface seem to contradict basic tenets of the faith as people have come to understand it?

We plan to confess the Athanasian Creed this Sunday and do so responsively. I'm not sure yet, but I think I'm going to focus on the idea of "giving an account" and the relationship between reality and one's understanding/description of it. Reality is simply God's story/narrative; you are what God says you are, not what you say you are. The Truth is what God says happened (per Peter's Pentecost sermon), not what anyone else says happened. The Law and Gospel proclaim God's account of your life and therefore focus on Christ for you rather than you in isolation. Repentance and faith are simply a matter of squaring our account of ourselves and others with God's Word/reality.
Rev. Thomas E. Jacobson, Ph.D

J. Thomas Shelley

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Re: Athanasian Creed
« Reply #24 on: May 28, 2021, 09:48:04 PM »
It was emphasizing that explicit rejection of the faith confessed is serious indeed.

It was emphasizing that explicit rejection of the faith has eternal consequences.
Greek Orthodox Deacon -Ecumenical Patriarchate
Ordained to the Holy Diaconate Mary of Egypt Sunday A.D. 2022

Baptized, Confirmed, and Ordained United Methodist.
Served as a Lutheran Pastor October 31, 1989 - October 31, 2014.
Charter member of the first chapter of the Society of the Holy Trinity.

Rev. Spaceman

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Re: Athanasian Creed
« Reply #25 on: May 29, 2021, 12:23:26 AM »
Yes, I was just being more polite in my language :)

It was emphasizing that explicit rejection of the faith confessed is serious indeed.

It was emphasizing that explicit rejection of the faith has eternal consequences.
Rev. Thomas E. Jacobson, Ph.D