Posts Tagged ‘revelation’

Why saint George is depicted on icons killing a Dragon (an ancient story of saint George killing the last dragon) – A Collection of 7 icons of Saint Martyr George

Friday, July 6th, 2012

Reading Time: 4minutes

saint_Georgios-killing-the-dragon-in-cave
Saint George is one of the most venerated Orthodox Christian saints in the Eastern Orthodox Church. My interest in saint George is cause of the reason, I myself bear the name Georgi (the Bulgarian equivalent of George). Saint George is mostly venerated in the Slavonic Christian-dome.In almost all Church icons depicting st. George in Orthodox and Roman Catholic christiandome saint George is piercing killing a dragon.
One of the reasons, st. George is depicted piercing the dragon is a reference of st. George victory over satan, through his martyrdom.

The Beast (Dragon) on the iconi is a straight reference to the Holy Bible; Chapter Revelation also known under the name Apocalypse.

In revelation, we read humanity and our saviour Jesus Christ will finally once and for all will kill the "ancient beast" = (satan)

In same logic, as Saint Martyr George has been victorious over Satan by his unshakable confession of faith in Jesus Christ in early 5th century A.D. , we believe in the Orthodox Church he is given the crown of (eternal) life as a prize for bearing un-human tortures in the name of the of Christ.

To illustrate visually the victory of saint George over Satan through his immesurable faith confession with which he become, there is a an early tradition in iconography in the Church to depict st. George killing a dragon.

The other reason why saint George is depicted to kill a Dragon is due to a Lebanon / Palestinian ancient story saying; There was a huge Dragon living somewhere in nowdays Lebanon / Palestinian lands.
The beast created a huge havoc killing many people and systematically torturing people in the area.

As the Eastern Orthodox Christian tradition continues …. the Dragon is said to have inhabited one of the caves near some village.
Interesting, the story tells these very same dragon was the last Dragon crawling the earth before the final disappearance of dragons.

Many brave local people tried to kill the beast but many died as the beast was unbeatable.
Being unable to beat-up the dragon with a physical (human) force the local population turnted to God for help – saying continously prayers to Saint George to help them defeat their dragon mischief.

Soon after, Saint George appeared on a white horse and pierced the "old dragon / snake". The dragon liberation miracle is said to be evidenced by local people and according to Orthodox monk books is one of the many great miracles occuring in past times.
The report of the miracle has quickly spread around all Lebanon / Palestinian lands and soon, being confirmed as real spread along all Russia as well as the rest of the Slavonic and Orthodox Christian world (Bulgaria, Serbia), Greece, Egypt (Alexandria) etc..
To illustrate saint George's appearance miracle, monastic iconographers started depicting saint George as we see him until this very day – Riding a horse and slaughtering a monstrous beast.

Below are seven 12-th century earlyicons of saint Saint Great-Martyr George killing the dragon;;
I've collected the icons from various website online. Hope this collection will be blessing for all Christ brother and sisters and generally anyone reading this post:

12-th century mosaic icon of st. George the Great Martyr Xenophontos Monastery

12-th century mosaic icon of st. George the Great Martyr Xenophontos Monastery

Orthodox Christian icon saint George dated to 1130 - 1150 A.D.

Orthodox Christian icon saint George dated to 1130 – 1150 A.D.

Saint Georgius the Dragon Slayer icon XII century orth icon

Saint Georgius the Dragon Slayer icon XII century orth icon

St. George Enamel icon Georgia 12th century

St. George Enamel icon Georgia 12th century

saint George Christian icon Yuriev Monastery Novgorod 12th century

saint George Christian icon Yuriev Monastery Novgorod 12th century

st. George Staraya Ladoga Orthodox Christian icon

st. George Staraya Ladoga Orthodox Christian icon

sv. Georgius 12th century Aios

sv. Georgius 12th century Aios

Nowdays saint George Holy Relics particles are kept for veneration in many Orthodox Christian countries monasteries. Here in Bulgaria saint George Holy Relics are kept in a Monastery nearby the seacoast in Pomorie. Any Christian visiting Bulgaria have the opportunity to venerate the Holy in (Pomorie's Monastery – St. Great Martyr Georgi.
 

Fifth Sunday of the Great Lent. And the Venerable Mary of Egypt Orthodox Church feast

Sunday, April 10th, 2011

Reading Time: 3minutes
Saint Mary of Egypt Orthodox Icon

The Fifith week and the fifth Sunday of Lent is preparation for the Holy Week (right before Eastern).
In the Gospel readings on the fifth Sunday it’s being told how God on his way for Jerusalem revealed for a time to his deciples (The Holy Apostles), that his way is the way of the cross, the suffering and death and that the high-priest and the jewish scripture interpreters will betray him, will violate him spit at him, beat him and crucify him and most importantly that he will be Risen on the third day.

The pupils has been terified walking with him on the way to Jerusalem and haven’t really understood the Lord’s prophetic words.

The mother of John and Jacob for example asked the Lord that her sons be allowed to sit on his right and on left side of the Lord’s throne, without knowing like the rest of the desciples that the Lord’s way of unbelievable suffering, which the desciples comprehends a bit later.

The cross’s road of suffering is a predetermined path not only for Christ’s desciples but for the whole Orthodox Church in general and for all the believers inChrist’s name.
God does alone has carried out suffering for the human sin and sinfulness and bears it together with man entering and changing human’s history and completing his redemption for us on the cross.
On this land a man without a revelation of God, never could understand that God is love, that God is good, even if they are already talking about two thousand years all the saints and Fathers of our Church.
God is love and sacrifice himself for man, so our suffering is noble by his feat, carried out for good, because the truth because of the transfiguration of man. His sacrifice is the noblest sacrifice of this world.

But in essense as many ordinary people say in the suffering there is nothing good and noble. The sufferings however after Christ’s sacrifice in his “house-building” plan to transfigurate the man’s personality does prooved miraculous for many Christians throughout the centuries.

A very light example of such a transfiguration of the human’s personality (soul) can be clearly seen in the example of saint Mary of Egypt’s living whose memory do celebrate in the Bulgarian Orthodox Church today (in the Fifth Sunday of the great Lent).

St. Mary of Egypt has lead a very unusual way of living, which is really striking to be comprehend even for us the modern Christians.

Her living is a God’s omen for all generations of Christians and is in clearly distinctive with ours.

As we can read in short in her living, from a very rich and prosperous prostitute touched by Christ’s love after entering an Orthodox temple by the Mercy and the great prayers of the Theotokos (Virgin Mary) she has decided to loose all earthly preasures and all the old unrightous way of living and start living a saint hermit life in the desert, she has fought the devil’s temptations and the consequences of sin and God’s wrath for the sinful way of live she has lead for so monay ears before she has turned to Christ in humility in about 25 years alone in the desert!

That’s clearly a God’s great miracle and faith simulator we should thanks God for ..

Her living is a very bright example that we should not despair ourselves about our salvation, and that God takes care for everyone who puts his faith in him and decides consciously to let behind his sinful way of living and evil and starts fighting with it.

God grants us our earthly living and waits throughout our whole earthly live for us to turn back from our sins and change for good.

St. Mary of Egypt is a great example for us who belief in Christ today about how much a repentance could work out in our lives.

From one of the greatest city sinners she has turned into a saint by repenting for her previous sinful life for 25 years.

After the end of her great trial period in the desert, seeing her great repentance God has granted us all the gifts of healing and miraculness of the Holy Spirit.

I would not stop into details of the great saint’s living I’ll just say it’s worthy to check her living in http://orthodoxwiki.org/Sunday_of_St._Mary_of_Egypt and be seriously astonished!

Let us take st. Mary of Egypt for a leading example in our lives and hope that God will have mercy on us and grant us her humbleness and repentance for our great sins we stand in daily ..

Save us Oh Lord by the prayers Saint Mary of Egypt!

Will the End of the World come in 2012? The Orthodox Christian perspective

Friday, April 1st, 2011

Reading Time: 7minutes
Nowdays, there is a lot of talk and discussions about the end of the world.
The fear of the End of the World in year 2012 is highly proclaimed, ancient mayan false “prophecies” are highly buzzed about.

Many people are more interested into the of the world, as many of the signs of the end times has been fulfilled.
Many people are turning back into occult and pagan beliefs to look up for prophecies to backup their thesis of the mayan prophecies.

A mess of false prophecies from different religions are usually mixed in order to proof to ourselves that the end of the world is at hand.
A number of apocalyptic movies has been produced until in the making industries as the more the time is close to year to 2012 the more sci-fi and all kind of movies on the apocalyptic theme are being produced.

Many people live in a constant fear that they’re gonna die in 2012 and start living even more irresponsible than before, asserting that there is no reason to do anything valuable now as the world’s end is near.
I myself some few years ago have been among this blind “false prophets” and has confessed the same destructive philosophy.
Yes it’s true that the Apocalypsis is approaching and has been approaching since the last 2011 years that passed since our Lord Jesus Christ’s birth on earth.
What is erronemous is the mistake that, we should live in fear about the end and we should do belief like the pagans in their shaky wrong beliefs based more on superstitiousness than on prophetic facts or signs of the time.

Even a plenty of music bands Protestant Christian bands like Saviour Machine are writting lyrics on the topic of the End Times, spreading fear unto some degree even among Christian Metal heads.

The situation outside the realm of the Christian secularity is even worser, I’ve heard a whole bunch of people especially in (USA) are preparing food and provisions to survive great cataclysm that they say is expected to come over the earth.
You can judge how insane is that! The end of the world as my spiritual father has told me some long time ago could be individually for us in every further minute.
If I as an individual die then I will experience the end of the world and when I will die is in God’s hands, so there is no point to worry about where the all world will end, if there is a high probability that my personal end could occur every single minute.
It’s sad that the consequences of such an panical beliefs about “the evils that are about to come on the world” are being falsely interpreted among Christians, this kind of tendency is also spread this days even among some practicing Orthodox Christians.

At many times studying of the Holy Bible “Book of the Apolapysis” are soul and mind destructive.
It’s a well known fact that in the past the book of Apocalypsis has been officially included in the Holy Bible, somewhere nearby the 5th century.

The reasons the holy church fathers decided to place the book of revelation in the bible so late is that, many of the things written are hard to understand and can lead novice Christian astray from the true essence of our faith which is love for God and love for the neighbor
Very pitily even I as an Orthodox Christians have suffered the great consequences of attempting to interpret the prophecies among the end of the world.

Therefore I found interesting that I share in this article what is the position of the Orthodox Church on the Apocalypsis or the so called End Times

First it should be said that Orthodox Christians positions is mostly based on factological information and prophetic saying by the Holy Fatherswhich by itself require a spiritual father to interpret them properly.

In the Orthodox Church we’re expecting the End Times, since the beginning of the one Holy and Apostolic Church. However the Apocalypsis is never being perceived as something that we should concentrate about but as an information that it’s good to have a general awareness of in order to have understanding in the spiritual times we’re living and how close we’re to the Second coming of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

The Orthodox Christian belief on Apocalypsis is completely opposite to the worldly belief which plants panic and fear in people’s mind and souls.
We belief that drawing near to the End Times, we’re drawing near to our second coming of our Lord and hence near to our eternal Salvation therefore the end days to come are not to be a concern of fear but on a contrary, they should accepted with humility and joy that we’re drawing near to our eternal salvation.

As a part of the topic of the End of the World, it’s very common nowdays in Christian and Non-Christian (heretical) groups (Mormons, Jehova’s Witnesses) to talk about the expected AntiChrist and to propagate fear in their deceived deciples.

These heretical groups has the wrong idea that starts with the definition of AntiChrist in that groups they belief AntiChrist means Against Christ, which is not very proper definition of the word.
The Orthodox Christian understanding about the AntiChrist word is Instead of Christ
Therefore the true meaning of AntiChrist in the original church was always perceived as Instead of Christ and not literally Against Christ.

Instead of Christ means, a substitute for Christ. Now if we think deeply in the modern world we have a bunch of substitute of Christ in the form of passions we have, disbelief inattendance of the Holy Liturgy – the Ancient Church service in our Orthodox Church.
In the number of Instead of Christ are a false belief to all kind of transcendental philosophies buddhism, reincarnation, hinduism, muslim beliefs, cult to public perons like let’s say Madonna or Marilyn Manson etc. etc.

If we as Christians have an example person for our life instead of having our saviour Jesus Christ for an example to follow, then we are definitely following an AntiChrist.
Don’t get me wrong I don’t say that Madonna or Michael Jackson or whoever is an AntiChrist. They’re definitely not, even though very often their behaviour and public performance becomes the reason for many people to be falsely leaded to false beliefs and false teachings different from the teachings of Our Holy Orthodox Church.

In that sense the danger of the mani AntiChrists is rooted in following anything different from the real Lord Jesus Christ who leads our Orthodox Church and who gives us grace by the 7 Church established mysteries.

Now as I said a few words about the general perception of Apocalypsis, the End of the World and the AntiChrist. Let me answer the question is there a date when the world will end up?

The Church is definitive about that and the answer is NO! NO! and NO!

It’s even written in the Holy Bible, here is the exact quote that clearly states, that we’re not given to know the exact time and date but only some general signs:

Mark 13:32:
"No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father."

Having said that for us Christians it’s more than clear that it’s almost impossible that the end of the world is in 2012, especially if that kind of false belief is taken from a pagan religion like the mayans.

Throughout the years before this year 2011, there were plenty of so called “prophecies”, each of which has claimed the end of the world will be soon, some of the “new days end time prophets” even has gave a specific date and time for the global cataclism expected to occur..
For instance followers of William Miller (the founder of the deadly end-times movement) has predicted the exact day on which the world will end according to their calculations this was Oct 22, 1844.

You can see by your own that this kind of deliberate fear creation and massive panic is not something new and has been known to exist for several decades.

Concerning the fear of the end of the world, I remember that one of our Holy Fathers said I quote by memory: “Even if the World falls apart and the sky falls over, I would not be afraid for I believe in God”.

Our Orthodox Christian perspective is not to focus on external cataclysms and calamities but to focus on our internal spiritual life.

Knowing when the world will come doesnt’ worth a cent for us the Christians, as it is not a goal of our living. Our Goal is to gain an eternal salvation by faith in Christ and repentance for our bad sinful lives.

Today many of the panical false beliefs and “warnings” from Jehovah’s witnesses and other sects a like are absolutely deliberate, they use this as a tool to set fear and then gain followers of their soul destructive satanic teachings.
We the Orthodox Christians, should not be afraid of the end but be joyful as it’s said in Thessalonians: “..Always be joyful..”

I personally belief that the end times fear that is being planted nowdays from all medias and the internet is at many times done on purpose, to even try to deceive us the Orthdox Christians.

This kind of end times and mystical interest into prophecies and future things to come very often could mislead us and make us belief many of the false beliefs the fortune-tellers has and preach.

Unlimited interest into spirituality, definitely ends up in spiritual blindness and spiritual disored, even often to a mind inconsistencies.
The recent raise of Neuro Lenguistic Programming is nothing different, it’s just another way to blind up and deceive people and mislead them from the way of thuth that our Saviour Jesus Christ has shown us..

Interest into broken-mysticism is very natural for our fallen sinful state, but we should not let this to lead our lives, we should not live in fear Christ has never given us a spirit of fear right on the contrary.

Note that the above reasonings include a lot of my personal reasonings and it might be that I’m wrong somewhere as I’m not a father and I’m not 100% aware of all Church beliefs.
However I’m pretty sure that most that I said so far is truthful and does correspondent to our Orthodox Church understanding about Apocalypsis and End times.
There is much to be said on the topic of End of the World and our Orthodox position about it, but as my goal was simply to answer the Will the world over in 2012 and I believe I answered thoroughfully enough it will most probably not!Now to close up this article, I do pray that God (The Holy Trinity) save us and protect us from all evil and show us the true way in the Orthodox Church and deliver us from false doctrines, false beliefs and end times paranoias.