ORTHODOX TIDBITS 4
Although Peter was martyred in Rome by crucifixion, he was not Pope of Rome
Proof: St Paul’s letter to the Romans:
“I am ready to preach the Gospel to you that are at Rome also” (Rom. 1:15). /Paul preaches to his flock and not Peter’s nor does he include Peter in his greetings to Rome. Note elsewhere Paul says that he would not preach where the Gospel had already been preached.
The sign of the Cross is powerful and effective.
A Father of the Church, praised in the fourth century the great veneration in which the sign of the Cross was held by Christians of his time:
“More precious than the universe, the Cross glitters on the crowns of emperors. Everywhere it is present to my view. I find it among princes and subjects, men and women, virgins and married people, slaves and freemen. All continually trace it on the noblest part of the body, the forehead, where it shines like a column of glory. It is made over sick animals, over persons possessed by demons, in war, in peace, by day, by night, in pleasant reunions and in penitential assemblies. It is a question of who shall seek first the protection of this admirable Sign.
What is there surprising in this? The Sign of the Cross is the type of our deliverance, the monument of liberation of mankind, the souvenir of the forbearance of Our Lord. When you make it, remember what has been given for your ransom, and you will be the slave of no one. Make it, then, not only with the fingers, but with your faith. If you engrave it on your forehead, no impure spirit will dare to stand before you. He sees the blade with which he has been wounded, the sword with which he has received the deathblow.” St. John Chrysostom
Orthodoxy has a history that goes back to the very beginning and for almost 2,000 years, our Holy Tradition has established four Divine Liturgies. The Divine Liturgy of St. James, The Divine Liturgy of St. Basil the Great, the Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, and the Presanctified Divine Liturgy. The western rite has never been part of our Tradition and does not even resemble any Orthodox Divine Liturgy, but certainly resembles the papal Mass. This is a modern introduction in the Church, in some jurisdictions.
The Papacy claims to be built on Peter, the foundation, and somehow they interpret this as meaning the popes of Rome are his successors. This is no different than saying, there is a stick in the corner, therefore it is raining out. They add that every pope is Peter, or a foundation and has universal authority over all Christians in the world, and as of 1870, he was voted to be infallible. Christ never told us that a pope of Rome would be our absolute head and the source of His authority. Was Christ negligent forgetting to tell us something so important as this? We will show that it is a myth.
Here is what Christ says about the sequence of events.
1. My Father worked up until the present time.
2. And now Jesus is carrying out the will of the Father.
3. Jesus promises to remain until the close of the age, and later ascends into heaven.
4. Jesus names His successor who is the Holy Spirit, saying: “The Comforter will come, whom I will send from the Father, even the Spirit of Truth, who proceeds from the Father, He shall testify of me” (John 15:26).” “At the time when the Spirit of Truth is come, He will guide you into all truth, for He shall not speak of himself, but whatever he shall hear that shall He speak” (John 16:13)
5. Fifty days after the Resurrection on the day of Pentecost, the Holy Spirit came and the Church expanded, spreading everywhere, guided by men who were guided by the Holy Spirit.
6. God the Father directed Abraham and his posterity, the Jews, sending the Prophets and promised the coming of the Messiah or Christ.
7. God the Son, took flesh from the Virgin, was crucified, destroyed death and rose from the dead,
and promised the Holy Spirit.
8. God the Holy Spirit came down as a rushing wind and fiery tongues filling the Apostles and then all the baptized with grace. He alone is the Ruler of the Church, and we all have this Spirit, relying on no man, but on the Spirit of Truth as Christ instructed us.
9. At no time was any man in charge of God’s work, for it was the Trinity who worked out our salvation, a work which no man could do.