(Note, I believe our next installment of the Layman's Guide to the 39 Articles could be fairly early next week. If for any reason it comes too close to Christmas, look for it during the twelve days of the brief season.)
My recent posting, Speaking only for myself, has had two more comments this very day from two sources. The first is an unidentified life long member of the Orthodox Church (who, if he/she? wants to continue in this discussion, will, I hope, use his name or create an online "handle") and the second is our own Fr. Laurence Wells. I added my own perspective, which in no way disagrees with the theology of Fr. Wells. Like him, I vigorously defend the full Biblical revelation of the Atoning and propitiatory death of our Lord, as expressed so well in our own service of Holy Communion:
"All glory be to thee, Almighty God, our heavenly Father, for that thou, of thy tender mercy, didst give thine only Son Jesus Christ to suffer death upon the Cross for our redemption; who made there (by his one oblation of himself once offered) a full, perfect, and sufficient sacrifice, oblation, and satisfaction, for the sins of the whole world."
A growing number of modern Orthodox writers reject the plain meaning of these words, even though they are not a Western innovation, but are a perfect summary of passages from the Epistle to the Hebrews, and of I John 2:1,2. The language of sacrifice has been denigrated, ridiculed and treated with such contempt that I must reject their opinion as utter heresy, just as, if not more, damning and more deadly than anything ever taught on the subject.
But, is it Orthodoxy? The words I have quoted above, for example, are an authorized part of the Western Orthodox Rite (called often, and in memorial honor, The Liturgy of St. Tikhon).
Below are the comments, and it may be best for genuine discussion to take place very openly. But, comments are no place for frustrated writers to make up for not being published. If any of you, who want to comment, have a complete book in your head, spare us the Tome, and keep it reasonably brief. Once you get on a pedestal you cease to converse. We have sermons here, but it is our own Continuing Anglican clergy who post them. Besides, if you write twenty-thousand words in a never ending series of comments, no one will read them anyway. "Brevity is the soul of wit," but endless repetition is the sole of witlessness.