A Positive Science

Orthodox science is a positive science

Our Orthodox understanding of theology is not as a speculative science, but a science based on a positive science much like that of the astronomer. Like the sciences that are inspired by observations made using instruments that allow us to see things that are invisible to the naked eye, our Orthodox science is a positive science that allows us to observe that which we can not see. Our Orthodox understanding of the Bible and the writings of the Fathers is that neither the Bible nor the writings of the Fathers are revelation or the word of God. They are about the revelation and about the word of God.

Like all the positive sciences, books about our faith can never replace observations. The writings of the Fathers, and the writings found in the Scriptures, are not the observations themselves, but about these observations. God has revealed Himself to the prophets, apostles, and saints, and they have seen God.They did not simply read about this encounter, but experienced glorification.

“The writings of scientists are accompanied by a tradition of interpretation, headed by successor scientists, who, by training and experience, know what their colleagues mean by the language used, and how to repeat the observations described. So it is in the Bible and the writings of the Fathers. Only those who have the same experience of glorification as their prophetic, apostolic, and patristic predecessors can understand what the Biblical and Patristic writings are saying about glorification and the spiritual stages leading to it. Those who have reached glorification know how they were guided there, as well as how to guide others, and they are the guarantors of the transmission of this same tradition (Father John Romanides).”

With love in Christ,
Abbot Tryphon

Photos: A group of Moldavians attended the Divine Liturgy on Sunday morning.

Monday June 19, 2017 / June 6, 2017
3rd Week after Pentecost. Tone one.
Apostles’ (Peter & Paul) Fast. By Monastic Charter: Strict Fast (Bread, Vegetables, Fruits)

Venerable Bessarion the Wonderworker of Egypt (466).
Venerable Hilarion the New, abbot of the Dalmatian Monastery (845).
Venerable Raphael confessor (1957).
St. Jonah, bishop of Perm (1470).
Venerable Paisius, abbot, of Uglich (1504).
Venerable Jonah, abbot of Klimetz (1534).
Virgin-martyrs Archelais, Thecla, and Susanna, beheaded at Salerno (293).
“Pimen” Icon of the Mother of God (was brought to Moscow from Constantinople in 1381 by Metropolitan Pimen).
Five virgins of Caesarea in Palestine: Martha, Mary, Cyria, Valeria, and Marcia (Greek).
Venerable Attalus the wonderworker (Greek).
Martyr Gelasius (Greek).
Venerable Photius, monk (Greek).
St. Justus, patriarch of Alexandria (130).
Martyrs Amandus, Amantius, Alexander, Lucius, Alexander, Alexandria, Donatus, and Peregrius at Noviodunum in Scythia Minor (320).
St. Claudius of Besancon (699) (Gaul).
St. Basil of Mangazea, Siberia (1602).
St. Jarlath of Cluain Fois (560) (Celtic & British).

The Scripture Readings

Romans 7:1-13

Freed from the Law

7 Or do you not know, brethren (for I speak to those who know the law), that the law has dominion over a man as long as he lives? 2 For the woman who has a husband is bound by the law to her husband as long as he lives. But if the husband dies, she is released from the law of her husband. 3 So then if, while her husband lives, she marries another man, she will be called an adulteress; but if her husband dies, she is free from that law, so that she is no adulteress, though she has married another man. 4 Therefore, my brethren, you also have become dead to the law through the body of Christ, that you may be married to another—to Him who was raised from the dead, that we should bear fruit to God. 5 For when we were in the flesh, the sinful passions which were aroused by the law were at work in our members to bear fruit to death. 6 But now we have been delivered from the law, having died to what we were held by, so that we should serve in the newness of the Spirit and not in the oldness of the letter.

Sin’s Advantage in the Law

7 What shall we say then? Is the law sin? Certainly not! On the contrary, I would not have known sin except through the law. For I would not have known covetousness unless the law had said, “You shall not covet.” 8 But sin, taking opportunity by the commandment, produced in me all manner of evil desire. For apart from the law sin was dead. 9 I was alive once without the law, but when the commandment came, sin revived and I died. 10 And the commandment, which was to bring life, I found to bring death. 11 For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it killed me. 12 Therefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy and just and good.

Law Cannot Save from Sin

13 Has then what is good become death to me? Certainly not! But sin, that it might appear sin, was producing death in me through what is good, so that sin through the commandment might become exceedingly sinful.

Matthew 9:36-10:8

36 But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, like sheep having no shepherd. 37 Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few. 38 Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.”

The Twelve Apostles

10 And when He had called His twelve disciples to Him, He gave them power over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease. 2 Now the names of the twelve apostles are these: first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; 3 Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus; 4 Simon the Cananite, and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed Him.

Sending Out the Twelve

5 These twelve Jesus sent out and commanded them, saying: “Do not go into the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter a city of the Samaritans. 6 But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. 7 And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ 8 Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.

Abbot Tryphon

About Abbot Tryphon

The Rt. Rev. Father Tryphon is abbot of the All-Merciful Saviour Monastery on Vashon Island, Washington. The Monastery is under the omophore of The Rt. Rev. Bishop Theodosy of Seattle, of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia. Situated in the heart of a beautiful forest, surrounded by the Salish Sea, the monastery is reached by ferry from either Seattle, or Tacoma, Washington.

One comment:

  1. Thank You ! As a child I was always told: Man skal ikke tro, man skal vide: One shall not believe, one shall know.
    But in what you write – One knows – therefore one believes. Wonderful. That is really positive !

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