2.10.15

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2.10.15




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Presentations text content in 2.10.15

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2.10.15Discipleship Class

The Language of Iconography

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A defense of icons

Read Exodus 20:4-5Defend the Orthodox Church’s use of icons in its faith and spirituality

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What is a “graven image?”

The Hebrew word translated “graven image” means literally “an idol.”

A

graven image is an image carved out of stone, wood, or metal. It could be a statue of a person or animal, or a relief carving in a wall or pole.

“You shall not make for yourself an idol, or

any likeness

of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the water under the earth. You shall not worship them or serve them.” Likely, this refers back to the first commandment, “You shall have no other gods before Me,” and specifically forbids the creation of idols

.

Slide4

“Icons” in the Temple

On the Ark: Ex. 25:18On the Curtains of the Tabernacle: Ex. 26:1On the Veil of the Holy of Holies: Ex. 26:31Two huge Cherubim in the Sanctuary: 1 Kings 6:23On the Walls: 1 Kings 6:29On the Doors: 1 Kings 6:32And on the furnishings:1 Kings 7:29,36

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The word “icon” is derived from the Greek word “eikon” which means image. "Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness…So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; " [Genesis 1:26-27]. "He is the image of the invisible God" [Col 1:15].

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Iconoclast movement – 8th century

Many converts coming from pagan backgrounds

Roots in many anti-Christian sources

Islam (ordering destruction of all Christian images)

Monophysite

origins

Nestorianism

Roman (Byzantine) Emperor, Leo III,

put

forth a series of official decrees in opposition to icons. 

Officially, it was in the year 726 that

Leo

III introduced

iconoclasm.”

Slide7

Iconoclast movement – 8th century

Defenders of Icons – St. John of Damascus, St. Theodore the

Studite

"

I represent God, the Invisible One, not as invisible, but insofar as he has become visible for us by participation in flesh and blood. If we made an image of the invisible God, we would certainly be in error, but we do nothing of the sort; for we are not in error if we make the image of the incarnate God, who appeared on earth in the flesh, and who, in His ineffable goodness, lived with human beings and assumed the nature, the thickness, the shape and the color of the flesh."

St. John of

Damascus

Matter sanctified by the Incarnation.

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Presence and Intercession of saints

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Presence and Intercession of saints

2 Kings 13:20,21: man raised to life by coming in contact with the bones of Elisha

Acts 5:15: Shadow of St. Peter

Acts 19:11,12: St. Paul’s handkerchiefs

“Now when He had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each having a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the

prayers of the saints

.” (Rev. 5:8)

Story of Lazarus and the Rich Man (Luke 16:19-31)

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Presence and Intercession of saints

31 But concerning the resurrection of the dead, have you not read what was spoken to you by God, saying, 32 ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.” 33 And when the multitudes heard this, they were astonished at His teaching. (Matthew 22:31-33)

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Major features of coptic iconography

Iconographer must live a healthy spiritual life and be theologically sound (fasting and prayer)Icons are not drawn or painted but they are written.Most did not sign their names

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HALO – Expression of Light from “within”

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“But

we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image [icon] from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.” (2 Cor. 3:18) “For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.” (2 Cor. 4:6)

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General features

Facing forwardBackground should be goldLarge and wide eyesLarge earsLarge headSmall noseSmall mouth, gentle lips: “And my mouth shall praise You with joyful lips.” (Psalm 63:5)Must have the name of the saint written

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Meaning of colors

Red: glory, honor, rich, sacrificeWhite: purity, divinityPale/dark green: sin, and evilBlue: heaven/heavenly Brown: ground/dust (humility)

Slide18

“The

ox knows its owner and the donkey its master’s crib; but Israel does not know, My people do not consider.” (Isaiah 1:3)

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And

even now the ax is laid to the root of the trees. Therefore every tree which does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.

(Matt. 3:10)

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Some clarifications

We venerate the icon but we do not worship the icon itself.

Why are icons anointed with “holy

mayroun

”?

Why does the priest offer incense?

Why are icons 2 dimensional vs 3 dimensional?

Who was the first iconographer?

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The saints are real

“Blessed

be

the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the

heavenly

places

in Christ

,” (Ephesians 1:3)

“Whenever we stand in your holy sanctuary, we are counted as standing in heaven…” (3

rd

hour litany)

16 

So he answered, “Do not fear, for those who

are

with us

are

more than those who

are

with them.”

17 

And Elisha prayed, and said, “

Lord

, I pray, open his eyes that he may see.” Then the

Lord

opened the eyes of the young man, and he saw. And behold, the mountain

was

full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.

(2 Kings 6:16, 17)

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