Sunday, January 4, 2015

The "Ecclesiastical" Theory of Evolution

By Metropolitan Hierotheos of Nafpaktos

The Church Fathers, when speaking of the Transfiguration of Christ and the partaking of divine glory, speak of the personal ascent on the mount of the vision of God. It is the constant cry of the Church: "Make Thine everlasting light shine forth also upon us sinners." And in a related prayer in the First Hour we feel the need to ask Christ: "O Christ, the true Light, which illumines and sanctifies every man who comes into the world! Let the light of Your countenance be shown upon us, that in it we may behold the light ineffable." Continual ascent and evolution are needed.

In the Church we speak of man's evolution, not from ape to man, but from man to God. And this "ecclesiastical" theory of evolution which the Church has, gives an understanding of life and satisfies all of man's inner and existential anxieties.

St. Maximus the Confessor teaches that Christ is not shown to all in the same way, but to beginners he is shown in the form of a servant, while to those who are ascending the mountain of the vision of God He is shown "in the form of God".

From The Twelve Feasts of the Lord, Ch. 7:17