New Humanity Institute   


Proclaiming the Healing of Humanity in Jesus          



Home     Ministries     Resources     Blog     Contact     Donate


NHI Resources on Medical Substitutionary Atonement in the Orthodox Tradition


Journey to Orthodoxy 



Nikephoros of Constantinople, Contra Eusebium I 401

says, 'He did not possess a flesh other than our own, that which fell as a consequence of sin; He did not transform it [in assuming it]... He was made of the same nature as we, but without sin, and through that nature He condemned sin and death.' (cited by John Meyendorff, Byzantine Theology: Historical Trends and Doctrinal Themes, 1999, p.49)


Prayers on the Day of Assumption/Ascension 

(Anastasis, Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople, Archdiocese of Thyateira and Great Britain)

"Lifting up on your shoulders the nature which had been led astray, O Christ, you were taken up and brought it to God the Father... Lifting up our nature which had been slain by sin, O Saviour, you brought it to your own Father... The majesty of him who became poor in the flesh has been raised above the heavens and our fallen nature honoured by sitting with the Father... and having through compassion exalted our fallen nature, you have seated it with the Father. O God, having renewed in yourself Adam’s nature, which had descended to the lower parts of the earth, you took it up to-day above every rule and authority; as you loved it, so you made it sit with you; as you had compassion on it, so You united it to Yourself; as united with it, so you suffered with it; as not subject to suffering, yet you suffered and glorified it with yourself. When you came down from heaven to things on earth and as God raised up with you Adam’s nature which lay below in Hades’ prison, you brought it to heaven by your Assumption, O Christ, and made it sit with you on your Father’s throne, as you are merciful and love humankind."


Matins on the Feast of Ascension 


"In a manifestation of great glory He Who humbled Himself in the flesh hath risen above the heavens; and our fallen nature hath been honored by sitting with the Father"


John Meyendorff, Christ's Humanity: The Paschal Mystery 

(St. Vladimir's Theological Quarterly 31, no.1, 1987: 22 - 30)


John Meyendorff, Imperial Unity and Christian Divisions: The Church, 450 - 680 AD (Amazon book, Jan 1, 1989) an outstanding Orthodox theologian and historian, makes a historical note on how disciples of Cyril of Alexandria introduced the idea of Jesus taking a cleansed humanity from conception


Kallistos Ware, How Are We Saved: The Understanding of Salvation in the Orthodox Tradition 

(1997; Amazon page)


Hieromonk Damascene, What Christ Accomplished on the Cross 

(Orthodox Christian Information Center, Mar-Apr 2004)


(Amazon book, Jun 1, 2008)

note 'deification as healing' and as 'work of the whole Trinity'


Stephen Freeman, A Common Faith 

(blog, Jan 15, 2008)

quotes early theologians on 'deification'


Steve Hayes, Salvation and Atonement 

(Khanya blog, Jun 30, 2008)

compares Western and Eastern views


Antiochan Orthodox Christian Archdiocese, Saint Athanasius and the ‘Penal Substitutionary’ Atonement Doctrine 

(blog, 2010; website)


Ivana Noble, The Gift of Redemption: Vladimir Lossky and Raymond Schwager on Anselm of Canterbury 

(Comunio Viatorum, 2010)


Eric, Reformed Theology is Nestorian

(Wicket's Take blog, Dec 18, 2010)


Daniel Marchant, Atonement in Orthodox Soteriology 

(thesis 2011; pdf file)


Steve Robinson, Love Wins - An Orthodox View 

(youtube video, Sep 2011)

a short video comparing Western and Eastern ways of doing evangelism


Darrell, What is the Eastern Orthodox View of the Atonement? The Recapitulation Theory 

(Tough Questions Answered blog, Nov 9, 2011)


Father James Bernstein, The Original Christian Gospel 

(Pravmir, Nov 1, 2011)


Father George Dion. Dragas, T.F. Torrance - A Theologian For Our Times: An Eastern Orthodox Assessment

(Grace Communion International, Feb 23, 2013)


Aidan Kimel, St. Athanasius: Theologian of the Cross 

(Eclectic Orthodoxy, Apr 2, 2013)


Aidan Kimel, St. Athanasius:

The Creation of Humanity in the Image of the Image 

(Eclectic Orthodoxy, Apr 4, 2013)


Aidan Kimel, St. Athanasius:

The Fall of Man Into the Body 

(Eclectic Orthodoxy, Apr 4, 2013)


Aidan Kimel, St. Athanasius:

The Nothingness of the World 

(Eclectic Orthodoxy, Apr 5, 2013)


Aidan Kimel, St. Athanasius:

Substitutionary Atonement and the Dilemma of Death 

(Eclectic Orthodoxy, Apr 13, 2013)


Aidan Kimel, St. Athanasius:

The Death of Death in the Death of God 

(Eclectic Orthodoxy, Apr 15, 2013)


Nathaniel McCallum, Original Sin and Orthodoxy:

Reflections on Carthage 

(Ancient Faith blog, Aug 22, 2013)

intriguingly credits transmission of "original guilt" not to Augustine's translation of Romans 5:12 but to his view that there was a gap between genesis (conception) and kinesis (motion); although see Francis Schüssler Fiorenza, John P. Galvin, Systematic Theology: Roman Catholic Perspectives, Volume 2 (Google book) which argues that some facets of Roman Catholic theology (like this point) have been in a state of flux; and see also Michael Pomazansky, Orthodox Dogmatic Theology (website, Feb 1, 2009), who also faults Augustine on Romans; but see Nathaniel McCallum, Inherited Guilt in Saints Augustine and Cyril (Academia, 2016) for his re-engagement of the issue


Stephen Freeman, The Scope of Passover and Penal Substitution 

(Ancient Faith blog, Apr 25, 2014)


Stephen Freeman, Legal Problems 

(Ancient Faith blog, May 29, 2014)


Timothy Copple, The Atonement of Jesus Christ 

(Orthodox Convert website)


David Bentley Hart, A Gift Exceeding Every Debt: An Eastern Orthodox Appreciation of Anselm's Cur Deus Homo (Scribd)

although Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger critiques Anselm


Stephen Freeman, No More Debt 

(Ancient Faith blog, Apr 13, 2015)

an Eastern Orthodox critique of modern finance based on atonement theology


Patrick Henry Reardon, Reclaiming the Atonement: An Orthodox Theology of Redemption, Volume 1: The Incarnation 

(Amazon book, Dec 22, 2015)


Aidan Kimel, Kallistos Ware and the Fall of the Incarnate Christ 

(Eclectic Orthodoxy, Jun 13, 2016)

see also my comments


Aidan Kimel, John Meyendorff and God's Assumption of Fallen Humanity 

(Eclectic Orthodoxy, Jun 19, 2016)


(Amazon, Aug 1, 2016) a wonderful collection of articles by Orthodox scholars focused on patristic sources


Stephen Freeman, The Seat of Mercy and the End of the Legal View 

(Ancient Faith blog, Aug 11, 2016)

study of the New Testament word "hilasterion" and the cultural shifts in medieval law that gave rise to abstractions like penal substitution


Stephen Freeman, Being Saved - The Ontological Approach 

(Ancient Faith blog, Aug 12, 2016)

why I like the term "medical substitution" for this theology


Aidan Kimel, When Did Jesus Decide to Die? 

(Eclectic Orthodoxy, Aug 15, 2016)


Stephen Freeman, How Good Is Your Will? Part Two of the Ontological Model 

(Eclectic Orthodoxy, Aug 16, 2016)


David Bentley Hart, Interview - Crackers and Juice Podcast 

(ObjectiveBob, Feb 27, 2017)

50 min mark on Calvin; 55:30 min mark on Barth


Fr. Lawrence Farley, David Bentley Hart’s "The New Testament: a Translation" (No Other Foundation blog, Oct 9, 2017) has important comments about the Greek word aionion and the theory of universalism

Part of a series on: