St. Irenaeus Ministries
Scripture Studies brought to you by the St. Irenaeus Center.
St. Irenaeus Ministries - a center of orthodox Catholic mission and renewal in Rochester, NY

The Lord promises that both He and the Son of David will be a Shepherd for His people, prophesying the future Messiah.

Direct download: EzekielLecture25.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 6:00am EST

Ezekiel prophecies against the "Shepherds:" politicians, religious leaders, and teachers who do not care for their flock spiritually or physically and instead only enjoy the privileges of leadership. Christianity has many modern examples among the clergy today.

Direct download: EzekielLecture24.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am EST

Jerusalem has fallen, but the few survivors have not learned to change their ways. Just because they survived this onslaught does not mean they are free from God's wrath if they continue to sin.

Direct download: EzekielLecture23.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 9:11am EST

God takes no pleasure in killing the wicked, but in the wicked turning back from their evil ways. It's not that we are trying to achieve a net positive when comparing sin and virtue, but whether we are turned toward Him or away from Him at the end.

Direct download: EzekielLecture22.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 9:36pm EST

The Lord offers hope beyond the punishment. He sets Ezekiel as a watchman, responsible for warning people if their sins will lead them to destruction. Whether or not they repent, if Ezekiel knows that they are in danger of destruction, and does not warn them, he is responsible. So are we also set as watchmen.

Direct download: EzekielLecture21.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 11:17pm EST

Egypt was one of the most prosperous ancient civilizations. The Lord plans on punishing Egypt for their duplicity in their military agreements with Israel. Babylon will come through and plunder Egypt, leaving it to forever be a shadow of its former glory.

Direct download: EzekielLecture20.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 8:06pm EST

The Lord compares the King of Tyre to Lucifer. The King's hubris will lead him to challenge Babylon and lose. The Lord will judge all nations that coerce or attack innocent countries. He will deliver the innocent from the thorns that attack them, though this may not happen in this lifetime.

Direct download: EzekielLecture19.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 7:24pm EST

Tyre had vast access to many markets: Persia and many Africans. Tyre produced a royal purple dye from shellfish that was very valuable. Their markets had all kinds of exotic goods. Among other things, Tyre is a center for slave trade. The King of Tyre considers himself a god, and will soon find out how incorrect this is.

Direct download: EzekielLecture18.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 6:00am EST

Tyre will suffer the rather of many nations as part of God's punishment for their perverse pleasure in Israel's demise. This prophecy is controversial, partially because Tyre is able to survive long sieges. However, over the course of history it faces opponent after opponent, eventually succumbing to Alexander the Great.

Direct download: EzekielLecture17.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 6:00am EST

God intends to punish the Ammonites, the Edomites, and the Phillistines. Some of them are punished merely for an attitude of malicious glee at the punishment of Israel. This should make us think twice about our own attitudes about our enemies.

Direct download: EzekielLecture16.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 7:04pm EST

God reminds the "Prince" of Israel of his country's many sins, and how he will not escape punishment. Ultimately the nation will be shown mercy though, despite its long history of sin. Ezekiel is ordered to perform several signs of Israel's coming punishment, including being ordered not to mourn the death of his wife.

Direct download: EzekielLecture15.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 7:44pm EST

Angry at the elders of Israel demanding prophecy, God reminds them of their continual inclination toward idolatry, even back in Egypt. He chastises them for distorting the Law of Moses to commit evil. For example some Israelites construed their firstborns belonging to God as an excuse to sacrifice and kill them out of convenience. We are warned that any ostensibly Christian activities that turn us away from God are not truly Christian activities.

Direct download: EzekielLecture14.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 8:15pm EST

God tells Israel a series of allegories. He warns Israel of its upcoming punishment for not only breaking His covenant but their political covenant with Babylon. He gains no pleasure from the death of His children and seeks their return to Him.

Direct download: EzekielLecture13.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 10:51pm EST

God reminds Judah that Sodom was synonymous was evil in Israelite culture, but that Judah's actions are worse because they should know better. They are a prosperous nation steeped in Scripture that is turning around and attacking those loyal to God.

Direct download: EzekielLecture12.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 11:42pm EST

God tells Ezekiel to compare Israel to a child disposed of in a wasteland, who God takes in, raises, and marries before she turns around and becomes a harlot. Israel "plays the field" by worshipping other pagan gods and making child sacrifices.

Direct download: EzekielLecture11.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 8:42pm EST

The lord promises to lead false prophets astray for pretending that they speak with His authority. The last part of this episode is some review and discussion of the previous few lectures, tying it into modern life.

I apologize for the echos in this recording.

Direct download: EzekielLecture10.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 6:00am EST

The Lord tells Ezekiel to prepare the Israelites for exile, that they may confess their sins to the nations. The exiled Israelites will one day come back and rebuild Israel, and the Lord will replace their hearts of stone and restore Israel to a nation loyal to the Lord.

Direct download: EzekielLecture9.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 11:59am EST

The Lord shows Ezekiel of a vision where He instructs a man in white linen to mark Israelites loyal to God with a crosslike symbol, and then destroy the rest with cleansing fire for their idolatry.

I apologize for the echo in this recording.

Direct download: EzekielLecture8.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 5:16pm EST

God shows Ezekiel a vision of pervasive idol worship among the Israelites, even among the highest echelons of power. Demand for false prophets is high at this time, though Ezekiel has gained notoriety and people are interested to hear what God tells him to say.

I apologize for the echo in this recording.

Direct download: EzekielLecture7.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 9:48pm EST

We discuss how some of the elements of the Ezekiel's visions are found elsewhere in the Bible. We also begin to discuss the vision of God on the throne, resplendent in awesome power.

Direct download: EzekielLecture6.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 6:00am EST

We discuss the living wheels that make up the chariot and throne of God in Ezekiel's vision.

Direct download: EzekielLecture5.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 6:00am EST

We discuss the winged creatures in Ezekiel's vision, tying in their potential signficance to other parts of the Bible.

Direct download: EzekielLecture4.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 2:48pm EST

Ezekiel sees of vision of powerful-looking creatures that hold up a chariot for the Lord. The imagery of these creatures is used for artistic effect in later, recognizable works but must be viewed in their context: as symbols of power and majesty.

Direct download: EzekielLecture3.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 2:39pm EST

We are introduced to Ezekiel. We know he was a young Levitical priest and that he was a Jew in the Babylonian exile. We discuss a bit of the historical context.

Direct download: EzekielLecture2.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 7:17pm EST

Welcome to our study on Ezekiel! Ezekiel is a book of apocalyptic literature, where God gives a startling vision that draws back the curtain between Heaven and Earth. It comes at a time when philosophers worldwide are starting to consider universal truths and move beyond purely local concerns. The time of Jewish exile foretold in Ezekiel will eventually lead the Jews to a renewed focus on the Law and the rise of the synagogue. That said, this book must be approached with caution. Read what the book is saying on the surface, and do not jump into wild speculation. Like Revelation, it can be tempting to ascribe unfounded meanings to certain passages. Start with what is obvious and sound, and let the other questions settle themselves in due time.

Direct download: EzekielLecture1.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 2:38pm EST

We must rejoice in Christ, pray and give thanks to God. If we follow the Christ-centered conduct of Paul and the Philippians, we will be following a solid example and one grounded in Scripture.

Thank you for listening to our study on Paul's Letter to the Philippians. Tune in for our next study!

Direct download: PhilippiansLecture20.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 4:37pm EST

Rejoice always, in the Lord. This is more than general cheer--this is part of our inner spiritual life. Such rejoicing reveals a trust in the Lord that can cut down divisions between Christians because it is God who will take care of the conflict.

Direct download: PhilippiansLecture19.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 6:27pm EST

Paul wants our joy and suffering and sacrifice not to be experiences in themselves, but products in our growing relationship with Christ. He asks one of the Philippian pastors to resolve a conflict between two prominent women in the community, because such conflicts keep them (and us) from progressing in Christ.

Direct download: PhilippiansLecture18.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 5:00pm EST

Paul tells the Philippians to race towards Heaven and towards an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ. No matter what they've achieved in their journey, they should stay focused on pursuing this goal. They should put to death all worldly appetites and desires, for those will drag them away from this final goal.

Direct download: PhilippiansLecture17.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 7:54pm EST

We are to know the power of his resurrection and participate in his suffering--we commune with Christ in His sufferings.  We must actively work to know God better. Being conformed to a death like Christ's. We should be ambitious to suffer as Christ had suffered. 

Direct download: PhilippiansLecture16.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 1:16pm EST

Paul argues that knowing Jesus Christ is more important than any earthly outward show of pious obedience. He argues that if that was the case, he is more devout than any other Jew. However, these accomplishments he counted as losses for the sake of Christ.

Direct download: PhilippiansLecture15.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 2:05pm EST

We begin the 3rd chapter of Philippians. Paul begins to remind the Philippians about the danger of Judaizers, Christians who want to unnecessarily push the Law of Moses on Gentiles. He points out this is unnecessary because Christian circumcision is in the spirit, not the flesh.

Direct download: PhilippiansLecture14.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 5:02pm EST

We must transcend our divisions to shine as light in a secularized world. Nonbelievers see when Christians squabble and they comment on it. Paul built an early Church with Jews, Greeks, and Romans, each with forces and ideologies that tried to drive them apart.  Compared to the crucifix however, every pettiness is so much less.

Direct download: PhilippiansLecture13.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 11:26am EST

Paul discusses how to live and work, day-by-day, depending on God and thereby shining out against the crookedness and perversity of the world. He also mentions his two loyal disciples, Timothy and Epaprhoditus. Epaproditus nearly died from sickness and is coming back to Philippi to assauge concerns from the community about his health. These human worries, if continually brought to Christ in prayer, are fundamentally compatible with the Christian life.

Direct download: PhilippiansLecture12.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 7:15pm EST

Paul illustrates the humiliations that Christ endured, which contrast with the sins of Adam. These humiliations are exactly how we should imitate Christ.

Direct download: PhilippiansLecture11.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 3:52pm EST

Paul exhorts the Philippians stand firm with one another and to be of one mind in the strongest rhetorical terms. Unity in Christ is a witness to Christ and the lack of unity is a scandal. Real love (not sentimental love) binds Christians one to another. All of us should have the same disposition, the same love, of the same soul, and the same mind. We are to put to death our own selfishness, and put others in our Christian community first.

Direct download: PhilippiansLecture10.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 1:54pm EST

Paul has concerns about unity breaking down in Philippians at a spiritual level. They have suffered years of persecution and poverty. Paul comforts them in this, saying it is a sign from God. They have been granted suffering for Him, and the evildoers will be punished.

Direct download: PhilippiansLecture9.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 12:11pm EST

Paul calls for the Philippians' love to grow and abound in knowledge and in understanding. He discusses suffering, giving joy that his imprisonment has led his preaching the Gospel to have such a wide reach. He argues that persecution is a privilege and a sign of one's devotion to Christ.

Direct download: PhilippiansLecture8.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 2:53pm EST

Paul is incredibly thankful to God for Philippi, and thankful for God's grace and work through them. This thankfulness buoys him as he serves his prison sentence, and is a model for us as we are called to "rejoice always and in everything give thanks."

Direct download: PhilippiansLecture7.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 2:44pm EST

Paul introduces himself and Timothy as servants of Christ Jesus, and the significance of this title is discussed. The letter is addressed to the entire community, not just the overseers and deacons. They are all saints, through grace in Jesus Christ. The titles of overseer and deacon also have different connotations in that time than today.

Direct download: PhilippiansLecture6.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 4:25pm EST

Paul maintains a warm friendship with the church of Philippi. They are poor and persecuted but joyful and generous beyond their means. Paul's letter to them, written from prison, reflects that effusive joy. Some references to Philippi in the other letters are discussed.

Direct download: PhilippiansLecture5.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 6:00am EST

Some of Paul and Luke's initial efforts at preaching in Philippi are chronicled. They meet and convert Lydia, a wealthy woman who would later be helpful in their other Macedonian efforts. They are arrested and beaten for their work, yet their are freed by the Lord through an earthquake. They convert their jailer and his family, but are asked to leave by the law in the town.

Direct download: PhilippiansLecture4.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 6:00am EST

Paul entered Asia but the Holy Spirit prevented him from evangelizing. He has a vision of a Macedonian man encouraging him to come to Macedonia. Paul makes his way to Phillipi, a major city in Macedonia. Phillipi is a rich port city with access to farmland and gold. It is also the site of the Battle of Philippi, where Octavius Caesar and Marc Antony defeats the Roman Republic. Afterwards it becomes a home for Roman veterans to retire. Philippi also had easy access via the Egnatian Way to many other cities. However it was far outside of Christianity's reach thus far.

Note: A map of Paul's missionary journeys is frequently referred to in this episode and may be useful.

Direct download: PhilippiansLecture3.mp3
Category:Christianity -- posted at: 6:00am EST