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THE DIVINE AND HUMAN CHRONOLOGY Father Dan Bădulescu CHRONOLOGY In the last 200 years we notice a distorted perception of the traditional church view on time, and it’s gradually replacing with a secular, scientific and political chronology, which differs radically and dangerously undermine the foundations of the Orthodox faith. How many of today's Christians know and believe that we are in year... 7520 (2011)? Of course this year is counted from the creation of the world, and its acceptance would make impossible the receiving of fantasy figures of billions of years, which are proposed (and if possible imposed) by the researchers (Soviet, American, Hebrew, Japanese, etc...) We note also including theological circles, the difficulty of believing that the six days of creation lasted just 24 hours and the embarrassing efforts that are made for amount them to imaginary geological ages. Let us read the word of Scripture to make things clear about these life and death things: "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth… And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day… And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day… And God saw that it was good. And the evening and the morning were the third day… And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years: And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so. And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also. And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth, and to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good. And the evening and the morning were the fourth day… And the evening and the morning were the fifth day… And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day… Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made. These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the Lord God made the earth and the heavens." The "science" of the fallen and passionately man sought from the time of Cain to remove the true knowledge given to man by God through the revelation of the Holy Spirit, totally different and contrary to all those other false "Discoveries". To succeed fully in this, efforts of some "forerunners"
2 were needed to, as were Galileo Galilei and Giordano Bruno, who struggled for the autonomy and philosophy of science research. Galileo said for example that "the Church deals with how to go to heaven and the science how does the heaven go." This sophistry is quite a cheap one, but here it was not joke with it and gradually, science has acquired this a request, first in the secularized and fallen West, and after 1848 in a drained and mason influenced East, not to mention the atheistic communist period in the 20th century. We saw on another occasion what it meant the replacement of the traditional geocentric and geostatic perspective and the emergence of the heliocentrist theory, a first heavy blow, from which flowed other heretical branches through further development of all natural sciences after the 18th century. If astronomy and physics have persuaded (unbelievable but true) a whole world that the stars and the planets move in a different way than previously believed, came, in turn logically, the challenging of the time and space dimensions. On this serious distortions was based the heresy of evolution, which requires enormous periods of time and huge spaces. This meant once again the destruction of the revelation by the help of measuring instruments and certain assumptions, reasoning and mathematical formulas, which were claimed to be as many irrefutable "evidences". When on this evil route was involved in the 19th century the binding force of the state, the so-called compulsory general education, the mass indoctrination made its effects. Of course it was not only the general education here, but especially by modern university system, which prepared teachers that will distract from then until the end of many minds and souls. In the contemporary period, as we have said in other places, the education system is backed by a media immanent and far more convincing. That been said, let's see how the chronology was distorted. Logically, the first step begins with a redefinition of what is meant in Genesis Chapter I by "day", "night", "evening" and "morning". Those who believed with a simple mind and not obscured by impious mixing the revelation of the Holy Spirit made in the beginning of the world to Adam, and Seth, Enoch, Abraham, and recorded in Genesis by Moses the prophet, did not deviate one iota or grumbled either at inspired words. The Synaxis of July 13 when it celebrates the Synaxis of the Holy Archangel Gabriel tells us the following: "The Archangel Gabriel is that one who taught Moses, who fled from Pharaoh's presence in the wilderness, how to write books, revealing him the creation of the world, of Adam, the fallen man..." All the believers know that the Archangel Gabriel was entrusted with the eternal hidden mystery unknown by angels, but they do not know as well this revelation, certainly of a less spiritual level, but very important because it lies at the underlying (fundamental) teaching of faith. For the incarnation of the Son can not be understood unless we know about the creation of the world, of the man, the fall and the other things. The chronological elements mentioned above are exactly part of this revelation and have to be believed, confessed and taught exactly. Time "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth." The divine teaching tells us that only God has no beginning and end, that He is eternal, infinite, immutable, uncreated. Everything He has created has an absolute beginning, preceded by nothing, that is what is called creatio ex nihilo. We will deal with the seen creation, which starts as we have seen at a baseline, this "beginning" is simultaneously and instantaneously one of space, time, cosmos, and the heavenly body the earth: "To this world at last it was necessary to add a new world, both a school and training place where the souls of men should be taught and a home for beings destined to be born and to die. Thus was created, of a nature analogous to that of this world and the animals and plants which live thereon,
3 the succession of time, for ever pressing on and passing away and never stopping in its course… Thus the writer who wisely tells us of the birth of the Universe does not fail to put these words at the head of the narrative. "In the beginning God created;" that is to say, in the beginning of time." (St. Basil the Great Hexaimeron) Blessed Augustine says that the world and time were created together: "the world was not created in time but with time". The world can not exist outside of time, proc dubio mundus factus non tempore east as sed tempore (PL 41, 322). So here is teaching: God made the time out of nothing. What is before: the time or the clock? Of course the answer is: time. So the moving celestial bodies are made later. And divisions of time: day, night, evening, morning do not depend on the heavenly "clock" movements, those lights: the sun, moon and stars: "I desire to know the force and nature of time, by which we measure the motions of bodies, and say (for example) this motion is twice as long as that. For I ask, seeing "day" denotes not the stay only of the sun upon the earth (according to which day is one thing, night another); but also its whole circuit from east to east again; according to which we say, "there passed so many days," the night being included when we say, "so many days," and the nights not reckoned apart;- seeing then a day is completed by the motion of the sun and by his circuit from east to east again, I ask, does the motion alone make the day, or the stay in which that motion is completed, or both? For if the first be the day; then should we have a day, although the sun should finish that course in so small a space of time, as one hour comes to. If the second, then should not that make a day, if between one sun-rise and another there were but so short a stay, as one hour comes to; but the sun must go four and twenty times about, to complete one day. If both, then neither could that be called a day; if the sun should run his whole round in the space of one hour; nor that, if, while the sun stood still, so much time should overpass, as the sun usually makes his whole course in, from morning to morning. I will not therefore now ask, what that is which is called day; but, what time is, whereby we, measuring the circuit of the sun, should say that it was finished in half the time it was wont, if so be it was finished in so small a space as twelve hours; and comparing both times, should call this a single time, that a double time; even supposing the sun to run his round from east to east, sometimes in that single, sometimes in that double time. Let no man then tell me, that the motions of the heavenly bodies constitute times, because, when at the prayer of one, the sun had stood still, till he could achieve his victorious battle, the sun stood still, but time went on. For in its own allotted space of time was that battle waged and ended... So time is not movement of the body." (Confessions) Take notice that also in this patristic interpretation of one of the greatest Latin Fathers, the miracle of Jesus Nun is expounded Orthodox as being the stopping of the sun in its diurnal course around the fixed earth located in the center. So the condemnation of the Western Church to the Copernican heliocentrist teaching and the heretical interpretation of Galileo is totally justified. In this connection we are told that the church was wrong being secluded in Aristotle's theory and was rashly venturing on an unknown land. If someone would ask: And what do our Church of the East has to say in this case? He normally get the answer: "nothing clear!" That is, it was not revealed either to prophets, nor to Jesus Nun himself or to the Fathers which one was moving around which. And behold, a great wonder, there is a much more brilliant mind, the heretic humanist Galileo that… discovers the truth through cuteness and a visual prosthesis called a sniper. But, we are asked to be lenient with the scientific ignorance of elders, which they did what they could and they said as it was known in their time. For, behold, if Jesus were modern or contemporary ought to command: "Stop earth! (from your double top rotation dizzy in the haunting universe)"Again, some supposedly moderate, sensible, polite and balanced, are suggesting to us that one can not know the truth in this matter, falling into heresy of agnosticism, a disguised disbelief which denies or at least ignores the revelation already made already some thousands years ago.
4 We shall see if it is so important to emphasize this. Remember once again that time came through at some point precisely, and flows in only one direction! "The succession of time, for ever pressing on and passing away and never stopping in its course". This problem is particularly present when current perception of the chronology and the calendar has suffered, with mathematics and evolutionary 19th century a radical change. The secular (civil) chronology today introduced a schizophrenic dating in two directions that upset even more people's minds and so scattered today. We are raised from childhood with this irrationally hybrid, without thinking to challenge it’s validity. If we allow us but a moment of reflection on the symmetrical flow of time in 2 opposite directions, with the axis (center) Nativity, and dating "before" and "from" or "after"... we see that the time has a point of origin 0 and flows in two directions without any determined end! (- ∞)? BC. (the birth of) Christ 0 AD (birth of) Christ? (+ ∞)
Or, if the axis of + (to an eventually end?...) this is totally true and understandable, as it may be the same on axis – (tor a possible start...)? It is written that even the Son does not know the end, but even the beginning? Not so, but there is an absolute beginning of creation 'ex nihilo', the Alfa moment or 0, which is of course the creation of the world. The traditional chronology says: "the year X from the beginning of the world" and the time flows, just as actually happens, in only one direction, towards the end, it is true that remains hidden, but which will come when the Lord decided (O = omega). A(0) Nativity O?
We do not wish thereby to deny in any way that the center is Christ, or even time axis, but only we wish only to restore the traditional chronology of the Church which, of course, honor Christ rightly. The answer to these questions is one: the current scheme of time assumes that time actually has no beginning nor end, and the course of history is just a succession of events and evolutionary changes (quantitative) that takes place in a infinite frame, and without beginning, i.e. eternal. It is a devilish materialistic vision that makes creation (space-time) co-eternal with God. Now we are easy to understand, what change in mentality (metanoia whatsoever on the reverse) was able to produce this to the modern man, be he orthodox believer, this aberrant way to understand time. The world was created out of nothing in the exact order described in Scripture and in that time. Being on the divine realm of mystery, it is wisest to testify, as the Scripture said, and the Fathers. Would it be possible to know when did all this happen? Or in other words, how old is creation? In the
5 chronology and the age of the world, there are inconsistencies between the Bible and patristic chronographs, but they do not exceed more than several hundred years, proving in this case with much more accuracy (precision) than fairy tales "science (fiction)" where differences reach billion years! Even if these small differences exist, the Church tradition was unanimous to give some of that: "the year 7500 from the beginning (building, creation) of the world"! By confessing this, we cannot err. It should be noted that throughout history the Church over a millennium, there was a very well established chronology, which was known and taught in the same manner in which history is taught in our schools. But this was an altogether different timeline than the school one, and we and render it below: "About the year from the creation of the world, and about the 3 cycles The Christians, i.e. the pleroma of the Church of our Lord Jesus Christ, have received in their dogmas the Bible as the first law given by God to the people of Israel and renewed - the second time – by the coming on earth of the Undefeated Redeemer of the mankind, our Lord Jesus Christ. The first law is known as "The Old Testament", and the renewal as the "New Testament" - "I am not come to destroy (the law), but to fulfil." says the Lord (Matthew 5:17). The age from the building from the world, the Jews and other chronographers, many write in many ways, but the Eastern Orthodox Christian Church states1 that our Lord Jesus was born in flesh, by the most holy Our Lady Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary, in the year 5508 from creation of the world. Number of years that some people use to divide – i.e. the time from the foundation of the world until the first coming of our Lord Jesus Christ - in five ages: They call the first age of the world, the one from Adam's creation to the flood (after the 72 interpreters called - the Septuagint2 -), years………………… ... .................................. 2262 The second age, the one from the flood to out come of the children of Israel, years ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ........................ 1632 The third age, the exit to the building of the church in the 4th year – Solomon years ... .. ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... .... ... 601 The fourth, the one from the building on the church, to its scattering – the Bondage of Jerusalem – years........................................... ......................... 424 The fifth, the one from the scattering to the first coming of our Lord JS. CS. years ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... .. 589 Total ... ... .. 5508
So, Christians are forced to address to the Genesis and start their counting from when God created the heavens and the earth, and not other contrivances than Scripture." (Schema monks Theophilus and Arsenions, The Pins...) A first consequence of the above was the distortion of the traditional churchly time perception, and its gradual replacement with a secular chronology, scientific and political, which differs radically and dangerously undermine the foundations of Orthodox faith. Certainly the year 7520 is counted from the creation of the world, and it’s acceptance would make impossible the acceptance of the fantasy
The foreword to Church Hist. Meletios, p. 81 For these 72 interpreters - the Septuagint - (Latin) who translated the Bible from Hebrew language in the Greek, by the time of Ptolemy Philadelphos, king of Egypt (285-247 B.C.) seek in the Epitome: Chapter 6 from aforehead, page 20, a word of praise worthy writing for these 72 men.
6 figures of billions of years, which are proposed (and where possible imposed) by the researchers (Soviet, American, Hebrew, Japanese, etc ...) We also note including in the theological circles, the difficulty of believing that the six days of creation lasted just 24 hours and the embarrassing efforts that are made to equal them to imaginary geological ages. In this area - the first days of creation to the fall of Adam - fancy can embroider any assumptions and any amount of years, which perfectly suits an evolutionary thinking. Thus it went from the infinite length of the universe (atheistic materialism) to the recent theory of "big bang" that indicates a length of approx. 16 billion years. For at these losing wanderings not occur, let us resume without any doubt in our selves the traditional chronology of the Eastern Church of Constantinople that tells us to count from the creation of the world 5508 years until the Nativity. Let us bring back before our eyes this chronology which has been buried in oblivion: "The holy and ecumenical first council was gathered in the 20th year to the kingdom of the great emperor Constantine and equal to Apostles during the years from Adam 5825..." (Chronograph) "And the remembrance of darkening of the sun, from the sixth hour until the ninth, when they saw the stars, in the year building the world six thousand three hundred ninety-nine from the building of the world, with sun and the moon into fifteen circles, the ninth indiction, the time of the kingdom of the honoured and Christ lovers wise emperors Leo and Alexander, his brother." (Synaxis August 8 th) "It was the Holy Thursday, the day of the mystery of Passover sacrifice and we eat it at the 4 th indiction in April of 6589." (Ana Comnena Alexiada) "It was printed (The Mass) at Holy Metropolitan in Iasi, month of May, in 7187." (Divine Liturgy Dosoftei 1679) "Oh, fighter and winner, great George, in need and disaster relief and warm supporter swift, and to the sorrow ones, unspeakable joy, receive a request from us, that your humble servant, the Lord Io Stephen Prince, by the Grace of God prince of Moldavia. Keep him unattainable in this world and the hereafter, for the prayers of those who worship you, that You are glorified for ever. Amen. And he did it in 7008 in the 43rd year of his reign."(Prayer of St. Stephen the Great, written on its flag in Prologs) "Being as big as it's surrounding is according to sailors’ observations most recently, twenty-five thousand and two hundred miles, or more just and true is to say, to be a sphere so great, as all people from the building of the world, almost seven thousand years ago, searching and looking so much both on land and on sea to find the edge and the extent, could not achieve this..." (St. Nicodemus the Hagiorite The Unseen Warfare – 18th century) "Letter anno 7220, in January, 13 Days" (St. Anthemos from Ivir, Didachos), etc.. etc., ... .. Current calendars, including the church ones, do not do any good in this respect, and recovery efforts should be made personal. Needless to expect something in this direction from the official science, the school or television. The heretical teaching of evolution needs a huge period of time, if possible one even infinite, as atheists Marxists taught. Now that one fell and was replaced with another invention: the so-called "big bang", a Cabbalist parody of creation out of nothing spent about 16 billion years ago. Putting this against the real revelation, it falls as a despicable rot, and will be soon, as happened with all other atheist scientific theories rejected by the secular world, as a monster born dead already. So we do not bother to refute it point by point. Day, night, evening, morning "And God divided the light from the darkness;" that is to say, God gave them natures incapable of mixing, perpetually in opposition to each other, and put between them the widest space and distance…
7 Since the birth of the sun, the light that it diffuses in the air, when shining on our hemisphere, is day; and the shadow produced by its disappearance is night. But at that time it was not after the movement of the sun, but following this primitive light spread abroad in the air or withdrawn in a measure determined by God, that day came and was followed by night." (St. Basil, Hexaimeron) The same said St. John Damascene. Here's how someone can fall into the extreme of putting into theology the spirit of science of this world. For in this view the word "day" placed in quotation marks is considered to be a metaphorical expression that would match the "geological ages", a new error against Scripture and the Fathers who have never heard such a thing: "And God called the light day, but the darkness he called night."… And from the beginning of day till the next day is one complete period of day and night. For the Scripture says: And the evening and the morning were one day." (St. John Damascene An Exact Exposition of the Orthodox Faith ) "Thus were created the evening and the morning. Scripture means the space of a day and a night... "And the evening and the morning were one day… If it therefore says "one day," it is from a wish to determine the measure of day and night, and to combine the time that they contain. Now twenty-four hours fill up the space of one day--we mean of a day and of a night; and if, at the time of the solstices, they have not both an equal length, the time marked by Scripture does not the less circumscribe their duration. It is as though it said: twenty-four hours measure the space of a day, or that, in reality a day is the time that the heavens starting from one point take to return there. Thus, every time that, in the revolution of the sun, evening and morning occupy the world, their periodical succession never exceeds the space of one day..." (St. Basil the Great Hexaimeron) "Although both light and darkness have been built in an instant, however, both day and night of the first day lasted each one twelve hours." (St. Ephraim the Syrian) ""God separated light from darkness; he called the light day, and he called the darkness night," allotting to each its own particular area and establishing limits for each right from the beginning so that they could keep to them permanently without interference. Everyone in his right mind can understand this, how from that time till this the light has not surpassed its limits, nor has darkness exceeded its due order, resulting in confusion and disruption. Really, this fact alone should suffice to oblige people obdurate in their lack of response to come to faith and obedience to the words of Sacred Scripture so as to imitate the order in the elements, respecting as they do their course uninterruptedly, and not overstep their own limitations but rather recognize the extent of their own nature. He made a point of speaking of the end of the day and the end of the night as one, so as to grasp a certain order and sequence in visible things and avoid any impression of confusion... God named the end of light evening, and the end of night, morning; and He named both day, for we should not be mistaken, nor to count evening as the end of the day, but to know well that the length of both equals a day" (St. John Chrysostom, Homilies on Genesis) The days had irrefutable the evening, morning, day (light), night (dark). And day and night had surely 12 hours (hours) each, from the very beginning, from the first day of creation. See in this regard also St. John Damascene: "The course which the Creator appointed for them to run is unceasing and remaineth fixed as He established them. For the divine David says, The moon and the stars which Thou establishedst, and by the word “establishedst” he referred to the fixity and unchangeableness of the order and series granted to them by God. For He appointed them for seasons, and signs, and days and years. It is through the Sun that the four seasons are brought about. And the first of these is spring: for in it God created all things, and even down to the present time its presence is evidenced by the bursting of the flowers into bud, and this is the equinoctial period, since day and night each consist of twelve hours." (An Exact Exposition of the Orthodox Faith) The spring is only three months and the vernal equinox, when, according to Holy Tradition was
8 made the world, how long can it take? 1000 of... what? The healthy Orthodox teaching confesses that those days of the early times of creation were quite normal with 24 hours, day and night as we know them. Day = age equivalents were made initially by Gnostic heretics and Kabbalists. We do not accept this possibility even as a working hypothesis, much less theological opinion or theologumena. That teaching is of recent time and had no spread in the Church, as required by the definition of theologumena. Nowadays, it is scattered by those ecumenist teachers who are desperate trying to throw impossible bridges over the unsurpassing gap that lies between lie and truth. It is also often encountered another brain wave again, that wants to be theologumena, that compromise alternative strain citing scriptural arguments: "But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day." (2 Peter, 3:8) From this it follows that, at least hypothetically, a day of creation lasted (could lasted) a thousand years. If we framed the quote above in context, we easily see the impossibility and absurdity of this assumption, which can not be accepted even as a mere "theological opinion": "For a thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is past, and as a watch in the night. Thou carriest them away as with a flood; they are as a sleep: in the morning they are like grass which groweth up." (Ps. 90:4-5) Blessed Theodoret of Cyrus’ interpretation: "And he says that human life is little and very painful, and to You, The everlasting and forever living, even the number of one thousand years is like a day and more, with the smallest part of the night. That "watch in the night" was called the fourth part of the night, those who were assigned to watch this one dividing it into four. And in the fourth watch also Lord came to the Apostles." "But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men. But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up… Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat." (2 Peter, 3:7-12) The prophet David speaks as a comparison: "a thousand years as yesterday." St. Peter speaks to Christians of that time on the final day. Who can equate this "day" with 1000 years? Or the day of the Lord which "will come as a thief in the night", i.e. will come suddenly, at once, by surprise, how could it be 1000 years? From here until the chiliasm is only one step. That verse was part of the call made by the Holy Apostle to believers to take seriously the possibility of the coming trial, despite the fact that many thousands of years had passed since the creation of the world, or even from the flood. Comparison is made to the way this time literally! "As a thief", "as" a thousand years, are figures of speech: comparisons, metaphorical language. And just those accused traditionalists of reading in a "neofundamentalist, sectarian, literally torn out of context, etc.." key, literal, out of txt of the chapter I!
9 As about further understanding, patristic, of the quote cited, how would this fit in the chronology of traditional church? If one day of Creation = 1000 years, then subtract 6000 (the first six "days" of creation) with the timeline and see what was left. According to this timeline if we are in year 7519 from creation, what happens with the remaining 1500 years? For from the birth of the Savior have passed about 2011 years! Not to say that equivalence is made by evolutionists theists only in one direction! But the passage clearly says: one day with the Lord is as 1000 years and 1000 years as one day. Moreover, even assuming that one can not know precisely how long those early days lasted, they had 100% 24 hours! For what other submultiples has the calendar day? It is divided into day (light) and night, and in... 24 hours, 1 hour = 60 minutes, etc. The equivalence day = age is totally unacceptable and blatantly contradicts Scripture and Tradition. An era of millions years? Which results in hundreds of millions of days? Or a day with a huge length, a daylight for millions of years and a night as long? This put already this "theological opinion" (?) into the realm of the absurd and ridiculous. We dare to make such harsh statements based on normative patristic interpretations in Genesis, not only upon personal common sense. Here's how to describe by instance Matthew Blastaris the situation of those days: "So when God made the world of nothingness into being, from first day to seventh was fully equinox, so that neither day nor night surpassed even as little as one another, because if the fourth day and enjoy the sight of creation of lights, however they were not allowed as nowadays to plane also on the opposite side of the universe, because the sun entering suddenly in the first equinoctial section of the zodiac went into the first grade of Aries, and the moon went immediately in the diametrically opposite side, passing into autumn equinox section, in the Balance, without any haste at all against the sun, as it does at least nowadays, because otherwise it was not possible is strictly keep it’s full light, showing us that God has done from the beginning nothing deficient, because the whole side of the moon being turned towards the shoes us through the distinguished movement the various forms of the lights. Therefore, both lights were moving together in the same time or rather unchanged in the same time with the universe as they would expected the end of creation. And on the sixth day man is formed by God's hands, the equinox still blooming beautifully and the moon being almost as the sun in the fullness of brightness, for it was not proper neither that the first man, who for his great kinship with the light was called even by those by alienated from the religion, by justice as “light”, to be created before the equinox, when everything was covered by darkness, nor that the lights of the world (to be created before that time), of that which should be subject to (the human), surrounding now for the first time as some satellites the one who should reign over creation, for otherwise still having time also to be create, and obviously had the day and night which were now present to start from the even, because it is more natural and before than uneven, in the way that possessions come fore losses, God teaching us from that to the law of equality, in which resides the being of the virtues, before all oversize and mismatch, and then after the seventh day the lights started to run as from open barriers and being made to move by different speed, anomaly was introduced." (Syntagma, Letter P: About Holly Pascha) The answer is simple: those who believe that "one day was a thousand years" have different perception of even years, and do not accept in any way the age of 7500 years, preferring human sciences dating to the revelation of the Holy Spirit. It is their right of course, but neither is the Church's teaching! Which is none other than the Bible, and resume in the Decalogue: "Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: But the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and
10 rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it." (Exodus 20, 8-11, repeated in 31:17) To complete the teaching of days see Annex. The Hours So was pleasing to God that the mystical number seven to designate days of the week. They were given seven traditional planets. These days are divided into day-light and night. Again, a day or night light is 12 hours too (of course at the equinoxes). In the sky are 12 signs. To these things already known, we shall add the church timeline: First Hour: 7 a.m.; Third Hour: 9 a.m.; Sixth Hour: 12 a.m.; Ninth Hour: 3 p.m.; Twelfth Hour: 6 p.m. This division is of great importance in the liturgical church calendar. We set the chronological elements established by God from the beginning to the end of the world. We shall see further their ranking according to the measure called calendar. In Scripture there are several references on this issue. We give here a moment in the New Testament parable of the vineyard workers (Matthew 20:1-3): And said unto them; Go ye also into the vineyard, and whatsoever is right I will give you. And they went their way. Again he went out about the sixth and ninth hour, and did likewise. And about the eleventh hour he went out, and found others standing idle, and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle?" Church Services When talking about the calendar, people usually think of annual duration, with those holidays where royal feasts and celebrations of our great saints, stations, etc. But before studying this structure, we stop first at the divisions: day and hour. We saw how they were counted, solar day divided into 12 hours of the day and 12 hours of the night, a total of 24. Now we are not interested in day and night fluctuation duration depending on the season, but we mean a situation where they are treated equally. The Orologion or hour service book includes first of all the structure of the "services". According to the apostolic exhortation "pray without ceasing" and resuming a tradition of the Old Testament, the early Church appointed a day structure of seven main points, called services. They were made and applied where it could maintain a diurnal rhythm of liturgical life, different than secular, that of the monastery. We give below an outline "ideal" model, such as shown structure of service: At 5 p.m. (Eleventh Hour) 1st service: Vespers (evening service) At 7 p.m. (First Hour at night) 2nd service: Compline (after supper) At 12 p.m. (Sixth Hour at night) 3rd service: The Midnight Office At 6 a.m. 4th service: Matins (morning service) followed by the First Hour At 9 a.m. 5th service: Third Hour At 12 a.m. 6th service: Sixth Hour and Typika At 15 a.m. 7th service: Ninth Hour In this office schedule were shown as we can see only services, without Divine Liturgy, Acathysts, Paraclises, Canons, and of course the sacraments and other services, not covered by this study. In the contemporary monastic and churchly practice these services are held at other times, or are
11 sometimes omitted (as in parishes). It is important to remember the importance of the liturgical season, particularly as we said different that the secular. The situation described as an "ideal", but it will adapt in practice from case to case depending on the situation. In this respect, we make the following observation: it seems that the orthodox position would be balanced to avoid two extremes in relation to these chronological milestones: - One (let's say from the right) would be their absolute, "fixation" of the moments of time. We saw that when Lent Matins, hours, some Vespers, serious time gaps are allowed, and in monasteries, where in fact there is consistently typical daily services, we met, somewhat paradoxically, quite serious and consistent differences, as a kind of absolution of the liturgical time (kairos) of the sidereal (chronic); - Other (from the left), would be the opposite: total relativization of the chronological parts, generally speaking not only of daylight hours, but even the equinoxes, moon phases. Neither such thing is admissible as "seen" landmarks they have their value too, and should be taken besides the thought ones, which, indeed are somewhat higher. It is somewhat the same as for body and soul: both must be taken into account. The Missal and Hours troparia give us the teaching and reasons of these moments, namely the moments as they link by the moments of our salvation, as they were worked by the Lord Jesus Christ. They also link their chronological moments by the creation of the world. We remember: - The world is made on a Sunday, at the vernal equinox; - Man is made on the sixth day (Friday) at Sixth Hour. - he laid his hands to the forbidden wood also on a Friday at Sixth Hour. And now let us see the chronological moments of salvation: For Vespers: "Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, after His salvific Passion, on Friday evening was crucified on the Cross, with clean linen wrapping Him was laid in the grave, and how Mary Magdalene together with the Virgin Most Pure, with complaint and great sorrow, by the bitterness of heart were watching these." Towards the end of Vespers we have also this chronology liturgical moment: "O Joyful Light of the holy glory of the Immortal Father, heavenly, holy, blessed, O Jesus Christ, having come to sunset and beholding the evening light, we hymn the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit: God. Meet is it at all times that Thou be hymned with fitting voices…" "Let us complete our evening prayer... Vouchsafe, O Lord, to keep us this evening without sin.... That the whole evening may be perfect, holy, peaceful, and sinless, let us ask of the Lord...." For Compline: "The most holy soul of human nature of Christ, being joined together with the deity, descending into hell, tied with power the master of darkness, enslaved his kingdom and the souls of all the righteous who were there for ever, has unbound from the tyranny, raised them with Him to heaven, and He dwelt them until His most glorious ascension." "Grant, Lord, this night to keep us without sin… And grant us, Master, as we go to our sleep, rest of body and soul; and guard us from the gloomy sleep of sin and from every dark pleasure of the night… Grant that we may sing your glory all night long..." We mention one detail: in this liturgical program bed time was at about 9 p.m. (Ninth Hour of the night) and then followed wakening for The Midnight Office, as we see in "morning prayers": "The Judge will come suddenly and the acts of every man will be revealed; but in the middle of the night we cry with fear: Holy! Holy! Holy! art Thou, O God; through the Theotokos, have mercy on us." "Having risen from sleep, I offer Thee, O Savior, the midnight song...." For Matins: "The Lord being insulted was taken to Caiaphas and Ana and there for our sins, suffered willingly slap in the face, spitting, ridicule and blows without mercy, from midnight until
12 dawn." "Early in the morning the women bearing myrrh hastened, lamenting, to your grave..." First Hour: "Our Saviour and Benefactor, being tied in first hour of the day, was led from Caiaphas to Pontius Pilate in the hall at the court as a malefactor and how the Judge of all was slander and condemned the unjust judge by the chief priests and lawless Jews elders. Third Hour: "Our Saviour on the third hour of the day was judged by Pilate and there endured ridicule and blows upon the cheek, and after that to the shame marble pillar being bound merciless endured terrible wounds, crown of thorns and other horrible ordeal... Also in the third hour of the day the Holy Spirit came down in the form of tongues of fire over the Apostles who were at prayer and enlighted them." "Lord, who at the third hour sent down your all-holy Spirit on your Apostles, do not take him from us, O Good One, but renew him in us who pray to Thee." Sixth Hour is a more special moment, because then was man created - the first Adam – on the 6th day (Friday) and again on a Friday at the same time the transgression took place in paradise. As for which the economy of salvation of Christ the Saviour was correlated with chronological moments exactly the same: there was a Friday, after the vernal equinox, full moon, as we shall see more fully on, and on Sixth Hour: "Our Savior, at that hour, carrying His Cross, was taken to the crucifixion and without mercy with four spikes was nailed on the Cross on Calvary between two thieves." "The One who in the sixth hour and day nailed the sin on the cross, that made boldly by Adam in paradise, turn apart our bound of our mistakes, Christ our God do save us." Sixth Hour is a middle (center) of the day - afternoon - but is also linked to a middle (center) and soteriological space, thus being closely linked to the Cross, with all its meanings: "Salvation in the midst of the earth performed Thee, Christ our God, on the Cross Thy most pure hands were outstretched, gathering all nations who cry: Lord glory to Thee!" Ninth Hour: "Our Savior wishing the salvation of mankind, on the Cross being hanged, speaking shouted: "I thirst", as with vinegar mixed with gall was watered, as His most holy soul into the hand of God the Father gave, all the foundations of the earth are shaken, the rocks were split, the dead arose from their graves and one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side and forthwith came there out blood and water." "He who on the ninth hour for us tasted death in flesh, kill our body mind, Christ God, and do save us." We exposed shortly chronology elements that link the celestial movements described in cosmology, emphasizing the overwhelming importance and their importance for Christian worship. In the appendix to this and some space-time diagrams representing, according to a study conducted by Ernest Bernea in 1930, our people's3 perception of space and time. To these we add some helpful diagrams, which are correlations first between signs and seasons:
Another correlation can be made between signs and the highlights of the day, taking about 2 hours sign:
Aries and Balance, in the daytime, are placed at the beginning (early) of the day, and the night (sunset). Cancer and Capricorn are the points of mid-day (noon) and the night (midnight) After discussions "on the spot" during pastoral visits, we could see live among our flock at all levels of education and occupations, a lack of basic fundamental knowledge of the total quasi related to creation of the world. Of course we have recommended as much as we could during confession and other circumstances, a perfect knowledge of Cap. Book I of Genesis with the 6 days of creation, just in the exact order. To facilitate this we have distributed a diagram like this: Day 1: Heaven. Earth. Darkness. Light. Water. Light. Day. Night. Evening. Morning; Day 2: Firmament (strength of heaven). Water separation; Day 3: The land. Seas. Weeds, grass, seeds, fruit trees. (Vegetation) as their own kind; Day 4: the luminaries: great (sun) and small (month). Middle of the day. Middle of the night. Signs. Weather. Days. Years. (Calendar, compass). Planets. Stars. (Constellations, galaxies, signs). Day 5: aquatic reptile living soul. (All water creatures, including mammals). Flying. (Including insects with wings); Day 6: wild animals, quadrupeds and reptiles. (Mammals, amphibians and reptiles. Man: man (of dust). Command dominion over all nature.
15 Day 7: Rest of God (cease to create something new) Annex: The day and hour. As the appointment gives sidereal and tropical year, is also on two ways: solar or natural day, sidereal day i.e. political, or astronomical. Natural day4 is the time from sunrise above the horizon, until his sundown below the horizon, which contrary of time, i.e., from sundown to his emergence over the horizon, is called night. And the political i.e. astronomical or sidereal day is 24 hours time – the time passing since a star that is based on a meridian from any point and get back to that point – therefore the sidereal days are equal, while the natural ones, from the winter change to the summer, the days are growing, and again from this up to the winter they shrinks. And at the interpretation of the 4th line, "and that he rose again the third day according to the Scriptures: and that he rose the third day according to the Scriptures' Chapter 15 of Epistle of St. Paul to the Corinthians (I Tom. p. 505), to clarify how search it is necessary to count the days, we read the following: "The counting of the three days of burial and resurrection of the Lord, especially other Fathers have understood, and the counting of them made by the divine Anastasios the Sinaite in the book called "The Adviser" (quest. CLII) taking from Severus, is best most appropriate than all, for it is united: 1) with the divine Scriptures, 2) with the sixth Ecumenical Synod, 3) with the ordinance of the Holy Church and 4) with people’s commonly custom. So he says that every day we use to count from one evening to the next one so that day to join that night that goes before the day and not with the next one - night, - and it is night, which started before and the next day, a night and a day and a body and one day, i.e. the 24 hours of the night before and the next day to make and to appoint a day"... And St. Athanasius the Great, in the question LII says: "For God called the people from the darkness of ignorance and law, to the light of the knowledge of God and the Gospel, as was proper, but commanded to us that the day of His Resurrection be started on the evening and to be celebrated at light; that would be rude and inappropriate to start from light and to celebrate in darkness and night what belongs to Christ." And who wants to learn to set forth more in detail, let him read the under note cited above and there he will clearly find with the scriptural evidences, that the Orthodox Christian Church of the East, counts the period of 24 hours a night and day, and not a day and a night, that such counting, will be in consensus with the divine Scripture which says that the Lord rose the third day from the dead, on whose counting, is clearly showed also there. The Clock-hour. The hour is the 24th part of night and day. The hours are all the same everywhere, although in ancient times many nations counted in many different ways. For they shared those natural days and nights in 12 parts, since the time of harvest of the 12-day hours to be larger, and the 12 hours at night shorter, and again in winter they changed also. And they called those hours like the chronological ones; of the night hours the first started from sunset - and sunrise fulfilled the 12 hours, and of the day, the first beginning at sunrise, the sixth at noon, 12th was over, after sunset.
See „Introduction to Ecclesial History”, Meletios, p. 74
16 For these hours the Saviour Christ mentions this: "Are there not twelve hours in the day?" (John 11:9), also in Acts (Chapter 3) for the 3rd hour. The ancient ones used this kind of hours. And the ancient Jews had another partition of the night and day period, dividing it into eight parts, of which the 4 parts for the night, and the other to the day, and those were different in length according to the growth or demission of nights and days; those of the day were called hours, and of the night guards, of which the first watch was counted from the sunset, and the second from midnight, then followed the third, and the fourth ended at sunrise, when they began to count the first hour of the day. And after this counting the Evangelist St. Mark says (15:25) "And it was the third hour, and they crucified him." (Schema monks Theophilos and Arsenios, The Pins of our Holy Eastern Christian Orthodox Church)
17 SPACE AND TIME DIAGRAMS
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