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Encyclopedia > Intercession of saints

Intercession of the saints is a Christian doctrine common to the Catholic and Orthodox Churches. Intercessory prayer is a petition made to God on behalf of others. If a believer prays for his children or friends, his enemies or leaders, then the believer is interceding on behalf of another. The doctrine of saintly intercession goes back to the earliest church. The justification for calling upon a saint in prayer is that the saints are both close to God, because of their holiness, and accessible to humans. Christianity is a monotheistic[1] religion centered on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth as presented in the New Testament. ... Separate articles treat Eastern Orthodox Christianity and Orthodox Judaism. ... This article is about the many forms of prayer within Christianity. ... This article discusses the term God in the context of monotheism and henotheism. ... In traditional Christian iconography, Saints are often depicted as having halos. ... This article discusses the term God in the context of monotheism and henotheism. ...

Some Christians say that Jesus' parable of Dives and Lazarus in Luke 16:19-31 indicates the ability of the dead to pray for the living. Paul's repeated references to Jesus Christ as "advocate" for the believers also may indicates that Jesus, living at the right hand of God, may intercede for the believer (Epistle to the Romans 8:34; Hebrews 7:25). By extension, other holy persons who are living in Christ on earth or in heaven (having left their earthly existence) may be able to intercede-through Christ- on behalf of the petitioner. (John 11:25; Rom 8:38-39) This is a controversial doctrine, because in some faiths, only Jesus is holy enough to intercede for people. From the Catholic and Orthodox Churches perspective, as well as Anglican/Episcopalian and old line Lutheran perspective: if those living here on earth can intercede on behalf of each other, then those which have already been glorified in heaven, and are even closer "in Christ", are made holy as "one" unified through him (the mediator between God and men- on earth and heaven) by his sacrifice, can certainly intercede for those on earth as well. (Heb 2:11, 10:10; 1 Tim 2:1-5) This article is about Jesus of Nazareth. ... Dives and Lazarus or Lazarus and Dives is a parable spoken by Jesus in the New Testament Book of Luke 16:19-31. ... The Gospel of Luke is the third and longest of the four canonical Gospels of the New Testament, which tell the story of Jesus life, death, and resurrection. ... Paul of Tarsus (b. ... The Epistle to the Romans is one of the letters of the New Testament canon of the Christian Bible. ... Christians believe that Jesus is the mediator of the New Covenant (see Hebrews 8:6). ...

Catholic Church doctrine supports intercessory prayer to saints. Intercesory prayer to saints also plays an important role in the Eastern Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox churches. Also some Anglo-Catholics believe in saintly intercession. They may point to such Scriptural passages as Tobit 12:12,15, Revelation 5:8, or Revelation 8:3-4, which depict heavenly beings offering the prayers of mortals before God. As well as James 5:16, (where all those in heaven can be presumed to be living righteously) which states the prayer of the righteous is powerful and effective. Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Wycliffe Tyndale · Luther · Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Pope · Archbishop of Canterbury Patriarch of Constantinople Christianity Portal This box:      The Roman Catholic Church... Eastern Orthodoxy (also called Greek Orthodoxy and Russian Orthodoxy) is a Christian tradition which represents the majority of Eastern Christianity. ... The term Oriental Orthodoxy refers to the churches of Eastern Christian traditions that keeps the faith of only the first three ecumenical councils of the undivided Church - the councils of Nicea, Constantinople and Ephesus. ... The terms Anglo-Catholic and Anglo-Catholicism describe people, groups, ideas, customs and practices within Anglicanism that emphasise continuity with Catholic tradition. ...


Protestant views

Many Protestant churches strongly reject all saintly intercession, in seeming accordance with verses like 1 Timothy 2:5, which says that Jesus is the only mediator between God and man. The practice was attacked both by the Waldensians of the 12th century, and the various Gnostic Bogomil groups (including the Albigensians). The Calvinists and Zwinglians were particularly zealous in their rejection of saintly intercession. The Thirty-Nine Articles of the Church of England condemned the invocation of saints as "a fond thing, vainly invented, and grounded upon no warranty of Scripture, but rather repugnant to the Word of God" (Article XXII). However, Oxford Movement led to a revival of the practice, which is now found among High Church Anglicans and especially Anglo-Catholics. (Redirected from 1 Timothy) This article or section should be merged with Second Epistle to Timothy The First Epistle to Timothy is a book of the canonic New Testament, one of the three so-called pastoral epistles (1 Timothy, 2 Timothy, and the Epistle to Titus). ... The Waldensians were followers of Peter Waldo (or Valdes or Vaudes); they called themselves the Poor men of Lyon, the Poor of Lombardy, or the Poor. ... Bogomils was the name of an ancient Gnostic religious community which is thought to have originated in Bulgaria. ... Albigensians A name that is usually used in reference to a later group of Cathari which was a religious movement of southern France in the 12th and 13th centuries. ... Calvinism is a theological system and an approach to the Christian life that emphasizes Gods sovereignty in all things. ... Zwinglis Successor Zwinglis successor, Heinrich Bullinger, was elected on December 9, 1531, to be the pastor of the Great Minster at Zürich, a position which he held to the end of his life (1575). ... The Thirty-Nine Articles are the defining statements of Anglican doctrine. ... The Church of England is the officially established Christian church[1] in England, and acts as the mother and senior branch of the worldwide Anglican Communion, as well as a founding member of the Porvoo Communion. ... The Oxford Movement was a loose affiliation of High Church Anglicans, most of them members of the University of Oxford, who sought to demonstrate that the Church of England was a direct descendant of the Christian church established by the Apostles. ... High Church relates to ecclesiology and liturgy in Christian theology and practice. ... The term Anglican describes those people and churches following the religious traditions of the Church of England, especially following the Reformation. ... The terms Anglo-Catholic and Anglo-Catholicism describe people, groups, ideas, customs and practices within Anglicanism that emphasise continuity with Catholic tradition. ...

Jewish views

There is some evidence of a Jewish belief in intercession, both in the form of the paternal blessings passed down from Abraham to his children, and 2 Maccabees, where Judas Maccabaeus sees the dead Onias and Jeremiah giving blessing to the Jewish army. This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... The angel prevents the sacrifice of Isaac (Rembrandt, 1634) Abraham (Hebrew: , Standard Avraham Ashkenazi Avrohom or Avruhom Tiberian  ; Arabic: ,  ; Geez: , ) is a figure in the Bible and Quran who is by believers regarded as the founding patriarch of the Israelites and of the Nabataean people in Jewish, Christian and... 2 Maccabees is a deuterocanonical book of the Bible which focuses on the Jews revolt against Antiochus and concludes with the defeat of the Syrian general Nicanor in 161 BC by Judas Maccabeus, the hero of the work. ... Judas Maccabeus (also called Judah the Maccabee) was the third son of the Jewish priest Mathathias. ... Jeremiah Lamenting the Destruction of Jerusalem by Rembrandt van Rijn. ...

In modern times one of the greatest divisions in Jewish theology (hashkafa) is over the issue of whether one can beseech the help of a tzadik - an extremely righteous individual. The main conflict is over a practice of beseeching a tzadik who has already passed away to make intercession before the Almighty. This practice is common mainly among Chasidic Jews, but also found in varying degrees among other usually Chareidi communities. It strongest opposition is found largely among sectors of Modern Orthodox Judaism, Dor Daim and Talmide haRambam, and among aspects of the Litvish Chareidi community. Those who oppose this practice usually do so over the problem of idolatry, as Jewish Law strictly prohibits making use of a mediator (melitz) or agent (sarsur) between oneself and the Almighty. Hasidic Judaism (Hebrew: Chasidut חסידות) is a Haredi Jewish religious movement. ... Haredi or Charedi Judaism, often referred to as Ultra-Orthodox Judaism, is the most theologically conservative form of Orthodox Judaism. ... Modern Orthodox Judaism is a philosophy that attempts to adapt Orthodox Judaism and interaction with the surrounding non-Jewish, modern world. ... Dor Daim, sometimes known as Dardaim, are adherents of the Dor Deah movement in Judaism. ... Rabbi Moshe ben Maimon (Hebrew: רבי משה בן מיימון; Arabic: Mussa bin Maimun ibn Abdallah al-Kurtubi al-Israili; March 30, 1135—December 13, 1204), commonly known by his Greek name Maimonides, was a Jewish rabbi, physician, and philosopher. ... Lithuanian Jews, (In Yiddish known as Litvish or Litvaks) are Ashkenazi Jews who have their origins in historic Lithuania. ... Haredi or Charedi Judaism, often referred to as Ultra-Orthodox Judaism, is the most theologically conservative form of Orthodox Judaism. ... Idolatry is a major sin in the Abrahamic religions regarding image. ...

The perspectives of those Jewish groups opposed to the use of intercessors is usually softer in regard to beseeching the Almighty alone merely in the "merit" (skhut) of a tzadik.

Those Jews who support the use of intercessors claim that their beseeching of the tzadik is not prayer or worship. The conflict between the groups is essentially over what constitutes prayer, worship, a mediator (melitz), and an agent (sarsur).

Muslim views

Intercession is a practice in which a prayer is offered to Allah through an intermediary. The Arabic term for intercession is called tawassul. Intercession is a defining characteristic of the sufi tradition in Islam. According to the traditional Sunni scholars, tawassul is considered a great virtue as long as the sharia is observed, and that no one is worshiped other than God. Wahhabism, a movement that started in the 18th century in the Najd region of Arabia, consider tawassul to be shirk. Intercession in Islam (Arabic: Tawassul) is a hotly debated topic between Shia and Salafis. ... Sufism (Arabic تصوف taṣawwuf) is a system of esoteric philosophy commonly associated with Islam. ... Sunni Islam (Arabic سنّة) is the largest denomination of Islam. ... Sharia (Arabic: transliteration: ) is the body of Islamic law. ... Najd or Nejd (Arabic: Naǧd) is a region in central Saudi Arabia and the location of the nations capital, Riyadh. ... This does not cite its references or sources. ...

See also

Saint Quentin is the patron saint of locksmiths and is also invoked against coughs and sneezes. ... The Intercession of Our Most Holy Lady Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary (Russian Pokrov, Покров) is one of the most important Russian Orthodoxy feasts (maybe the most important after the Twelve Great Feasts). ... alex (Cyrillic: Слава) is the Orthodox Christian custom of celebrating a family patron saint. ... Eastern Orthodox shrine Buddhist shrine just outside Wat Phnom. ...

External links

  • Salatul Istisqa, Islamic prayer for rain ceremony
  • The performance of the Salatul Istisqa, the Islamic prayer for rain, in the parched bed of the Goulburn River in Denman, in the Hunter Valley, Sydney, Australia, 2003.
  • Hadith Proofs for Tawassul through the Prophet



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