All-time Popular Blog Posts

If atonement ain’t penal, why the cross?”—the popular reception of this article has surprised me. With 3,982 views, it’s on the way to becoming the single most popular article within a single year I have ever published here on Eclectic Orthodoxy. I’m curious why it’s been so popular: perhaps because I published it during Western Holy Week; perhaps because it’s a topic I rarely address; clearly because it’s a topic that is on the mind of many of EO readers, as confirmed by the reception of my piece on George MacDonald: “Penal Substitutionary Atonement and the Living Christ” (1,761 hits). I suspect, though, I won’t be returning to the topic for a long time. Got other fish to fry.

But “If atonement ain’t penal, why the cross?” is not yet the all-time single-year favorite. That honor (for the time being) goes to “Apocatastasis: The Heresy That Never Was.” This article was first published in 2015, when it garnered 2,766 views. I revised it the following year, and the views jumped to 4,229. I have revised it a couple of times since, with republication in 2018. It enjoys a total view count of 13,622 views. The piece seems to enjoy periodic hit surges, which is not surprising given that it addresses a question that few bloggers (and theologians, for that matter) substantively address. Yet despite its enduring popularity, “Apocatastasis” is not the all-time all-time favorite. That honor goes to …

What is Orthodox Hell?” This piece was originally published in 2013, when it received 3,284 views–a record at the time for the fledgling blog. Each year it receives a goodly number of views—people are constantly finding it through Google—bringing the grand total of views to 14,653. I revised and republished it earlier this year. Hell is popular!—hopefully only to read about, not to visit.

And now that I have mentioned the above articles. I fully expect more hits for the blog. It will be interesting to see which of the above (or perhaps none of them, as I still have many more articles to write this year) wins the most popular Fr Kimel article of 2019 award. Stay tuned for the annual report in early January 2020.

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5 Responses to All-time Popular Blog Posts

  1. Those three articles are definitely bangers. If I remember correctly they were the first ones that brought me here. I’ve hung around ever since and loved it.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Steven says:

    Your articles addressing apocatastasis are among your best writing, IMO. They keep me around.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Fr Aidan Kimel says:

      Thanks. Wait until this Fall and Winter. Two books are going to be published that should light up the blog–Ramelli’s A Larger Hope (vol. 1) and David Bentley Hart’s That All Shall Be Saved. I have reviewers already lined up for both titles (several reviewers, in fact, for the latter). This is going to be fun!

      Liked by 3 people

      • Yes, that’s what I was imagining. Just wait til September & the new DBH book release.

        I don’t know what the right words are to describe what I’ve always referred to as a probable, hopeful, practical universalism, as distinguished from an absolute, in principle, theoretic kind? But the resources you’ve made available & discussions you’ve nurtured helped me get a grasp on what’s at stake – not just systematically, but pastorally. By delving into various stances, at first, my own thin, hopeful universalism became more of a thick, “practically absolute” or “virtually exceptionless” hopeful universalism. Later, though, I was able to move beyond that, even if only incrementally. I now believe that a robust, absolute, in principle, theoretic universalism is so eminently defensible that it should be regarded an acceptable theological opinion and in no way a priori & dogmatically excluded. So, I guess I’m now a thin, absolutist universalist. And I’m not trying to get cute with such distinctions because this stuff has always been way more of an existential & pastoral concern to me than academic, and I’ve approached it with much earnest, even though not philosophically or theologically trained. More concretely, I’ve been raising children and grandchildren, telling them to forget about hell, for all practical purposes. Now, I feel better equipped to explain it on even more solid, theoretic grounds. So, a sincere thanks for that.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Tom says:

    Rock star!

    Liked by 2 people

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