Eastern Orthodoxy and the Apostle Paul: Where is Justification by Faith?

I thought I would reblog my 2013 series on justification by faith. Hopefully it will be of interest both to those who missed the series when it was first published and to those who might like to re-read the articles. Please share your comments, questions, criticisms. Perhaps we could even get a conversation going. 🙂

Eclectic Orthodoxy

Where is justification by faith in Eastern soteriological reflection? It’s a curious omission, given that justification is a critical theme in the epistles of the Apostle Paul. How does one preach on the Epistle to the Romans without speaking of justification? If the Apostle’s understanding of justification is governed exclusively by the question “Are the works of Torah binding on the (Gentile) Church?” then I suppose it’s understandable why justification has ceased to have any homiletical or theological function within Orthodoxy. By the 4th and 5th centuries the Church had become a Gentile community and deification had established itself as the preferred way in the Eastern Church to speak of salvation in Christ.

Yet I still find it a curious omission. I am well aware that St Paul’s understanding of justification is identical neither to the Reformation nor the Tridentine understanding of justification; but one might think that with all…

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