"Obedience will bring about all things. Obedience will bring about Grace. The slightest disobedience to the elder drives Grace out. All the passions are healed little by little through obedience... Obedience is humility." ~ Elder Ephraim of Katounakia

 

 

Content Summary

The Gates of Hades Prevaileth Not rehabilitates the vacancy of human knowledge about the Church established by the Lord Jesus Christ when diagraming heresies and schisms defeated by the early Church. For instance, the fourth century hretic Arius proclaimed that there was a time when Christ was not (i.e., the Son of God as a created being) and this resulted in the calling of a council in 325 in Nicea where what has come to be known as the Nicene Creed (the Symbol of Faith) issued as a means by which to clearly define the Orthodox Church's belief on the nature of Christ.

There was also the fifth century Monophysite heresy wherein there existed the claim that the Lord Jesus Christ possessed only one nature (the divine absent the human). The Fourth Ecumenical Council (held in 451 in Chalcedon) averred the Orthodox belief that the Lord had two natures (divine and human) in one Person. In this manner the Orthodox Church defeated heresies and errected its definition of the Faith, and it is in thoroughly examining these heresies that our Holy Orthodox Church's councils conquered that The Gates of Hades reveals correct theology.

The same is true when scrutiny of other heresies is undertaken, such as the Nestorian denial of the Theotokos (the Mother of God), the Pneumatomachi denial of the Holy Spirit's divinity, and so on. Moreover, the Protestant misconception of Christ and His disciples in the first century and then a fifteen hundred year "dark age" until Martin Luther came to rescue/resurrect the Church has, in The Gates of Hades, been rebutted by not only discussing in great detail Church Fathers and councils, but also by the concommitant illumination of an unbroken line of apostolic succession.

In establishing what the Church has believed everywhere, by all persons, always, The Gates of Hades also exposes the many Western departures from what Christ taught the Apostles; such as, the Protestant use of grape juice for the Blood of Jesus Christ, a single immersion for "baptism" (along with the abandonment of Chrismation), etc.

Finally, the unique digest must be mentioned due to its facilitation of easy research and enhancement of learning. Assuredly, The Gates of Hades is an indispensible guide to Church history and theology.