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Christ the Conqueror of Hell: The Descent Into Hades From an Orthodox Perspective
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Christ the Conqueror of Hell: The Descent Into Hades From an Orthodox Perspective

4.12  ·  Rating Details ·  73 Ratings  ·  10 Reviews
Hardcover, 231 pages
Published October 1st 2009 by St. Vladimir's Seminary Press
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Mar 24, 2013 Jim rated it it was amazing
I found it an exciting overview of how liturgy and theology together reflect the Orthodox view of redemption in the narrow sense of Christ harrowing Hell. The early church writing as well as the poetry grow into a consistent liturgical package of the church's belief. It is based on a broad view of forgiveness and redemption.
I enjoyed it for the knowledge as well as the "hearing" of the verses.
Mar 06, 2017 Mimi rated it it was amazing
Excellent exploration of the meaning of Christ's descent into Hades, the liturgical texts, and the festal meanings.
Sep 30, 2012 Jon rated it really liked it
Shelves: theology
This book surprised me. Archbishop Hilarion (I love that name) Alfeyev has done great theological work, which he's presented very clearly. The perspective of the Orthodox Church is that Scripture's teaching (as well as the creeds and much of the tradition and the liturgy) emphasizes that Jesus planned to willingly descend into hell to break the bars and chains, set the captives free, and conquer death and hell for eternity. This materal was exciting (at least for someone like me) to read!

Jul 21, 2014 Joseph rated it really liked it
Shelves: orthodoxy, religion
excellent survey of the Orthodox view on the descent of Christ into hell after the crucifixion. the first part of the book examines the viewpoints of various Eastern (and a few Western) theologians and liturgists, and the second half includes numerous excerpts from the liturgical tradition of the church, which, as the Archbishop points out, is second only to Scripture in authority for the doctrine of the church. the last chapter is a theological summary of what Christ's descent means.

highly reco
A good compilation of texts related to Christ's Descent into hades but, as I suspected, it's a bit dry and scholarly. If you want something along the same lines but a bit more accessible Fr. Anthony Coniaris' "No Matter How Deep the Darkness He Descends Deeper Still" is quite good.
Fr. Ted
Mar 12, 2012 Fr. Ted rated it liked it
A good summary of the Orthodox Church's view on Christ descent into the place of the dead from which He arises, destroying death in the process. Many quotes from texts canonical and non-canonical, from Church Fathers and the liturgical texts. A good book to immerse yourself into the topic.
Mar 29, 2013 Mark rated it liked it
I was surprised at the centrality of Christ's Harrowing of Hell in the theology of the Greek Orthodox church as put forth by Archbishop Hilarion Alfeyev. Alfeyev gives a good summary of the theology of the conquest of Hell on page 154 of his text:

"...first Christ's decent into Hades was voluntary; second Christ was victor in Hades, liberating and redeeming the dead; third, Christ descended into Hades as God, but Hades mistook him as a mere mortal, having swallowed the "bait" of his humanity (m
Jul 02, 2012 David rated it liked it
FYI, Rob Bell was not the first Christian to question our traditional views of the afterlife.

This book presents an Eastern Orthodox view (not the only one btw) of Jesus' descent into Hades mentioned in 1 Peter 3.18-20. The claim is that this passage of scripture is an integral part of any discussion of the afterlife, or the real life after life.

The best place to begin this review is at the end and the questions posed there:

1 - Is it possible that the fate of a person can be changed after his dea
Clifton D. Healy
Dec 29, 2014 Clifton D. Healy rated it really liked it
A very excellent resource for the doctrine of the descent of Christ into hell and the implications of that event. The final chapter is a well-written resource for understanding the Orthodox understanding of authority with regard to doctrinal and theological commitments.
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Dec 27, 2016
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Jul 30, 2014
May 02, 2017 Spencer rated it it was amazing
It is oddly fashionable to object to the descent into hell. While 1 Peter 3 is vague at times, it was unanimously interpreted as describing a descent into hell up until Augustine in the western tradition. This book is a comprehensive survey of Christ's descent into hell and its soteriological implications based on the Church Fathers. Also unanimous was that 1 Peter 3 implied the possibility of post-humous salvation. Alfeyev surveys literally hundreds of texts that speak about this interpretation ...more
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