Is There Really a Patristic Critique of Icons? (Part 4 of 5)

Gabe Martini’s 4th response, of 5, to Calvinist pastor Steven Wedgeworth, whose premise is that there is Patristic evidence for his being an iconoclast. Gabe completely dismantles these claims one-by-one. Give this a read if you’re interested in why Orthodox Christians have icons and their place in the Church and Her worship of God.

“Orthodox Christians do not approve of the adoration or “worship” of icons, which should only be given to the Holy Trinity. We do not “worship” icons as idols; rather, we pay them respect, as we would kiss the precious photograph of loved ones, or as an American citizen might salute the American flag. We are not worshiping the paper of the photograph or the fabric of a flag, but are rather paying proper respect and affection (“service” or δουλεία) to their prototype (or to what they re-present to us). In any case, we would affirm the words of St Gregory that any abuse or superstitions related to icons (or relics) should be condemned. In fact, the Church did this very thing during the deliberations of the 7th Ecumenical Council, while affirming an icon’s proper veneration. St Gregory’s letter is not an opposing, Patristic voice to the proper use of icons; rather, it stands firmly in the same Tradition as the consensus of the Church.”


About Joel

Joel is a 32 year old currently residing in the southeastern United States. His interests lay in philosophy and theology. He is a writer for The Christian Watershed.

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