Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Antioch - Canon 12

If any presbyter or deacon deposed by his own bishop, or any bishop deposed by a synod, shall dare to trouble the ears of the Emperor, when it is his duty to submit his case to a greater synod of bishops, and to refer to more bishops the things which he thinks right, and to abide by the examination and decision made by them; if, despising these, he shall trouble the Emperor, he shall be entitled to no pardon, neither shall he have an opportunity of defense, nor any hope of future restoration.

Whereas the previous canon was directed to the overseers, this addressed the elders and deacons who were considering or actively engaged in seeking the help of civil authority for church matters.  These together were intended to prevent any ordained person from operating independently, not recognizing the unity and cohesion of the church as it was intended to be—an organic, living thing whereby each part works in harmony with the whole.

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