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12.05.05 04:41 Age: 7 yrs

"I don't have the Holy Spirit in my pocket"

Orthodox theology teacher Athanasios Papathanasiou

Orthodox theology teacher Athanasios Papathanasiou

These were Orthodox theology teacher Athanasios Papathanasiou's words during one of the press briefings at the world mission conference. Papathanasiou, a member of the Church of Greece involved with the planning of the conference, was trying to explain the seemingly abstruse issue of the influence that the final things (eschata) have over the non-final ones (history).

"Nothing in history is final," he said, "and that gives us a lot of freedom, because the future remains open for God". At the same time, the perspective of God's kingdom means that every human activity is under judgement. "I know for sure that I'm being called to salvation, but I can't be sure that God would agree with everything I think," he said. Papathanasiou is nonetheless sure about some things: "It's not true that we Christians should be reconciled with everything: we don't have to be reconciled with injustice."