mardi 15 avril 2008

St Augustine and Purgatory?

I am quoting what the blogger The Reluctant Traditionalist wrote here in support for Purgatory quoting himself St Augustine, Enchiridion and City of God:

During the time, moreover, which intervenes between a man's death and the final resurrection, the soul dwells in a hidden retreat, where it enjoys rest or suffers affliction just in proportion to the merit it has earned by the life which it led on earth.[1]

For our part, we recognize that even in this life some punishments are purgatorial,—not, indeed, to those whose life is none the better, but rather the worse for them, but to those who are constrained by them to amend their life. All other punishments, whether temporal or eternal, inflicted as they are on every one by divine providence, are sent either on account of past sins, or of sins presently allowed in the life, or to exercise and reveal a man's graces. They may be inflicted by the instrumentality of bad men and angels as well as of the good. For even if any one suffers some hurt through another's wickedness or mistake, the man indeed sins whose ignorance or injustice does the harm; but God, who by His just though hidden judgment permits it to be done, sins not. But temporary punishments are suffered by some in this life only, by others after death, by others both now and then; but all of them before that last and strictest judgment. But of those who suffer temporary punishments after death, all are not doomed to those everlasting pains which are to follow that judgment; for to some, as we have already said, what is not remitted in this world is remitted in the next, that is, they are not punished with the eternal punishment of the world to come.[2]
[1] Augustine, Enchiridion 1099; NPNF1 3:272.

[2] Augustine, City of God 21:13; NPNF1 2:464.

Now, this indeed supports what St Mark of Ephesus agrees on about Purgatory, but also where he disagrees, i e that the final judgement is the general one.

I also found this from Didache:

But concerning the apostles and prophets, act according to the decree of the Gospel. Let every apostle who comes to you be received as the Lord. But he shall not remain more than one day; or two days, if there's a need. But if he remains three days, he is a false prophet. And when the apostle goes away, let him take nothing but bread until he lodges. If he asks for money, he is a false prophet.[1]

[1] Didache 11. Note the reference to "apostles" which are obviously synonymous in this context with the "prophets." I believe this is evidence that the Didache is very ancient, probably written well before the year A.D. 100, since by that time (we know from the evidence of Sts. Ignatius and Clement) the word "apostle" was used in the techical sense to refer to the Twelve plus St. Paul, whereas earlier it could be used more loosely to apply to missionaries in general (see, e.g. Acts 14:14; Rom 16:7). For this and several other reasons I believe that the scholars who date the book very early, c. A.D. 70, are probably correct. N.B.: This is also an argument in favor of an early (pre-70) dating of the book of Revelation, since the word "apostle" is used in the same way there (see Rev. 2:2).
Note that I am NOT claiming to be a prophet, only a writer. One who did claim to be a prophet came up with this masonic garbage:
The Book of Mormon says:

‘And now, behold, if Adam had not transgressed, he would not have fallen, but he would have remained in the garden of Eden. And all things which were created must have remained in the same state in which they were created; and they must have remained forever, and had no end. And they would have had no children; wherefore they would have remained in a state of innocence, having no joy, for they knew no misery; doing no good, for they knew no sin’ (2 Nephi 2:22–23).

This is contrary to Church Fathers. The first parents did not need fall to have sexual maturity, only to have temptations. They did not need evil to do good. They did not need misery to know joy. They did not - as yet - need the sure prospect of death to enjoy or use this life properly. They did not need to sin to praise God. Also, the style "and now behold" (when arguing rather than telling what happened) is too much 19th C Bible parody preaching to be genuine old literature, as the book claims to be. And still we haven't spoken on the ending of St Matthew's Gospel yet ... (scroll down to last paragraph, read also comment in red - the Catholic Concept of Apostolic Succession is shared by Orthodox Church - or other way round)

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