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Chrysostom (pt. 1)

Clearview Today / Abidan Shah
The Truth Network Radio
June 1, 2023 9:00 am

Chrysostom (pt. 1)

Clearview Today / Abidan Shah

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June 1, 2023 9:00 am

In this show, Dr. Shah introduces us to a very important figure in church history.

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Welcome back, everyone.

Today is Thursday, June the 1st. I'm Ryan Hill. I'm John Galantis. And you're listening to Clearview Today with Dr. Abbadon John, the daily show that engages mind and heart for the gospel of Jesus Christ. You can visit us online at If you have any questions for Dr. Shah or suggestions for new topics, send us a text at 252-582-5028, or you can email us at contact at

That's right. You guys can always help us keep the conversation going by supporting the show. You can share it online. You can leave us a good review on iTunes or Spotify. Absolutely nothing less than five stars will be accepted or appreciated.

And we're going to leave a couple of links in the description so you can do just that. And today's verse of the day is coming at us from 1 Thessalonians 1-8. For from you, the word of the Lord has sounded forth, not only in Macedonia and Achaea, but also in every place.

Your faith toward God has gone out, so we do not need to say anything. This is the power of a reputation of following Christ. Paul's writing to the Thessalonians here, and he's praising them because their reputation, Paul's not the one sending their reputation out. Their good works, their good deeds, their obedience to God are going out and making a name for this church in Thessalonica. And everything that we talk about here on the Clearview Today Show is about impacting the nations with the gospel of Jesus Christ. My prayer is that we would continue to do that, not just in this radio show, but here at our church and our personal lives.

And you, our listeners, that you would have a reputation of being a Christ follower. You know, one thing that we use to spread the message of Christ is our technology, our phones. Yes. You see, I've got a phone.

Yes. And you've got a phone. I do. Show the camera that you have a phone. I do have a phone. David, you got a phone? Here's a phone.

David and Nicholas, you got a phone too. Yes. I know Dr. Shaw has a phone.

Yes. And you know who doesn't have a phone? Who's that? My daughter. So she, tell them to last a couple weeks ago. So this has been a topic, not a frequent topic of discussion, but just something, you know, that has kind of crept up now that the twins are 10 years old. My son and my daughter, they're twins. Ten years old. They'll be 11 this summer.

They're starting sixth grade in the fall. So some of their friends have phones now. But Hartley wasn't a fan of this no phones policy. Well, she, I feel like she understands, but she wanted to make her position known. And that's good. Healthy communication. And that's perfectly fine. Healthy communication. So much so that there was a time recently when she was working on a project for school, which, you know, they use our computers.

Sometimes they work on projects for school, making Google slides and stuff like that. Hartley is on the way to bed. She said, I finished my project. I also had the chance to put it together another project that's for you and mommy.

So will you take a look at that when I, after I go to bed? And I was like, Oh, okay, what is this? So Elizabeth hops on her computer, opens it up, and we see this slideshow presentation. Why I should have a phone by Hartley Hill. So if you guys are not watching the video podcast, absolutely, you need to be watching the video podcast because we are going to walk through this little girl's, and spoiler alert, it didn't help. She's not getting a phone. No, she's not getting a phone. But we're still going to look at the, all right, so let me see the lowest.

You want to hit the first slide? Okay, so why I should have a phone by Hartley Hill. I'm not gonna lie. I was I was impressed with the presentation right now. Clip art.

It's pretty good. She breaks it down into three different categories. The first is the responsibility of having a phone.

Here are the bullet points. There are several ways to express the responsibility of having a phone. This is my 10 year old writing this right, right, right.

That's right. You need to be able to keep up with it. Valid point. You need to know which websites and apps are good and bad, right?

You need to make sure to have it charged and ready to use. True. Absolutely.

It also can't be a distraction in school or church. She's got a good head on her shoulders. She understands. That's right.

Absolutely. Communication. Phones are great ways to connect with friends and family.

That's true. Social media platforms like Facebook, Snapchat and Instagram are great ways to connect and make friends. You can call parents in case of an emergency or for sports and more and more. You can change.

You can exchange phone numbers with friends to call and text so far. She has not said anything untrue. That yeah, she's so far and I think for the rest, but she has not said anything on. She has not.

She has not told a lie. This little girl is my responsibility. Communication and point number three. Entertainment. All right. Entertainment. Let's entertainment. Games, movie apps and social media are awesome ways to entertain. Okay.

On long car rides. I don't want to annoy you and talk for hours. No, it's hardly a talker.

She is a talker for the record. Neither one of us have ever said that we were annoyed. Right?

Right. Neither one. Neither my wife. She's just looking out for you.

She's just never said, honey, can you be quiet for a little bit? You're, you're getting on. Okay. We have never said that the Disney plus logo, by the way, on this slide is huge.

It takes up the majority of the, you can see the most important app to download for her. Uh, if I have a phone, I won't be bored on breaks or days. We have free time. Okay. Okay.

I won't bug you so much and you can enjoy some quiet at least again, not never communicated that you were annoyed by her. I don't know where that has come from. Uh, I don't know the end.

It says it also has a graphic that says goodbye. Thank you for reading this. Listen to this part.

This is the icing on the cake. Thank you for reading this presentation. Hope you found this presentation very persuasive.

Please take this into consideration. Also, I would like a pretty cool and new one to stellar presentation, stellar presentation. And I told her as much, I'm like, honey, this is an excellent presentation. And she was like, okay, let's land. Yeah. I was like, and you are still too young to have a phone of your own. I think you got to give her the phone at this point. Well, here's, here's what she wants, right?

Responsibility. She already understands the responsibility of having a phone, which is why she can manage things like having a smartwatch and having a Kindle tablet that has the capability to have games and entertainment things as well as the ability to watch Disney plus as well as the ability to call and text family through like things like messenger kids. Okay.

Have all of that communication again, I've already talked about communication through the watch and through the tablet. And entertainment games, apps, Disney plus already all available on the tablet. So the things that she wants the phone for, she already has access to. Right.

What about just the social status of having a phone? She's 10. She's 10.

I mean, that is a good point. She, she is like on one, on the one hand, it is very important for children to be able to fit in with their peers and feel like they have a place to belong. On the other hand, she's 10. She's 10.

And that kind of negates everything that I just said. Right. She is, she is 10 years old. Hartley, I'm sorry. I love her dearly.

She's growing up, but not that fast. I fought for you Hartley, but, but not very hard. Yeah. We're going to grab Dr. Sean just a minute for episode, but if you have any questions or suggestions for new topics, send us a text at 252-582-5028 or visit us online at We'll be right back. Hey everyone.

My name's Ellie and I'm David. We want to take a minute and let you know how we can actually serve you as you're listening to Clearview Today. The Bible paints an extraordinary picture of who we are as a church body. The mission of Clearview Church is to lead all people into a life changing, ever-growing relationship with Jesus Christ. A huge part of leading people is praying for them. A big reason that Christians have unanswered prayers in their life is because they're not praying.

You know, 1 John 5 15 says, and if we know that he hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of him. If you're listening to the Clearview Today Show, we want to know how we can pray for you as well. There's a number of ways that you can get in touch with us at Clearview and share your prayer requests, but the best way is by texting us at 252-582-5028. You can also send us an email at prayer at or you can download the Clearview app on iTunes or Google Play.

You know, on that app, there's a dedicated prayer wall that helps us to get to know what's going on in your life, how we can pray for you, and how we can take any necessary steps to get you moving in the right direction. Thanks for listening. Now let's get back to the show. Welcome back to Clear View Today with Dr. Abbot Anshar, the daily show that engages mind and heart for the gospel of Jesus Christ. You can visit us online at If you have any questions or suggestions for new topics, send us a text, 252-582-5028. That's right, and if today's your first time ever joining us here on the Clear View Today Show, we want to welcome you and let you know exactly who's talking to you today. Dr. Abbot Anshar is a PhD in New Testament textual criticism, professor at Carolina University, author, full-time pastor, and the host of today's show.

You can find all of his work on his website. That's right. Dr. Anshar, you know, the way that you prepare and deliver messages is just profoundly impactful to me. I don't tell you that enough, but it helps me tremendously in my spiritual life and in the way that I lead here. So just thank you for what you do. Thank you.

Thank you. That means a lot. And to have a team like this who not only encourages me, but also steps up and jumps in and attacks any opportunity that we have in a good way, you know, like takes on the challenge and seeks to please God. I just, I'm grateful that God has put us together at this time in history. This is, this is his will.

I'm just thankful to him every step of the way. Thank you, man. Absolutely. I've been thinking about nicknames for us, like as a team or as individuals.

Sure. Well, really I've been thinking about nicknames for me because you guys already have nicknames. I have a nickname?

We all both do. What's my nickname? Do you not read the YouTube comments on the show? Like he's Dr. Gaines or Dr. Questions, your Chester McMoys muffin, but I don't have one.

I did not know that. I don't have a nickname. And so I was thinking about, I don't know, like, like, cause I, I talk a lot and we, we all talk a lot, but you know, I was thinking about something like golden mouth. I think that nickname might already be taken. Excuse you. Excuse you. Chester McMoys muffin here.

I believe that might already be. Chester McMoys muffin is better than wet biscuit mcglee. That's what Elizabeth got you. But I was thinking about, I was thinking about, did you write those down?

Did you just come over those all the time? I was thinking about golden mouth for me. No, you can't have that one because that's already been taken by someone. Really? I didn't know that. Dr. Shah, do you know anyone with the nickname golden mouth? I do.

In fact, he didn't even know it was his nickname until 150 years after he was gone. Really? Yeah. Let me ask you this.

Was that the most roundabout segue to get into a talking point you've ever seen? I still don't know exactly what did you call Ryan? That's the voice of the people. All I get is like a muffin in the end. I don't know.

If that's what the people want, that's what the people want. Chester McMoys muffin was the name. Okay.

Sure. That's what they call him on the, on the forum. I mean, how about Nicholas back then? Nicholas, you know, I don't know if they have a name for Nicholas. How about Nicholas Abari? Nicholas Abari is good. I also like pickles. Sometimes I call him snickerdoodle.

Snickerdoodle is good. Yeah. St. Nicholas Abari would work. St. Nicholas Abari, I'll do that.

I'll do that. But if golden mouth is taken. Was St. Nicholas like you would wear the Christmas hat and you would just be St. Nicholas? He wears it. Yeah. During Christmas time he was wearing it in school. If your name's Nicholas, you kind of have to lean into that.

He's like vigorously nodding his head. Yeah. Golden mouth. I really, I thought that was going to be my thing, but I guess it's already taken. Yeah, that is taken.

That's what we're going to talk about today is the golden mouth himself. Well, it all began with our trip to Turkey, which is ancient Asia minor, Anatolia. And we went to the city of Istanbul, which used to be Constantinople, which used to be Byzantium.

Wow. Speaking of names, lots of name changes. Byzantium, then to Constantinople, then to Istanbul. And it's still Istanbul to this day.

Today is Istanbul. Gotcha. Yeah.

Okay. And so in Istanbul or Constantinople, there used to be, and still is, is a church called Hagia Sophia. Hagia Sophia means holy wisdom. Hagia is holy Sophia wisdom. Hagia Sophia means holy wisdom. And this was a church that was built, I mean, get ready for this, in A.D. 360. Wow.

Okay. So this was built by Constantius, who was a successor of Constantine the Great. And 360 was built. And let's talk about the church first, and then I'll talk about the illustrious pastor who happens to be Chrysostom. Right.

That's why you did all that segue to get to this point. But he was the pastor of the church, and he became the pastor in 398 A.D. And then in 404 A.D., he was exiled. And when he was exiled, people were up in arms, and they did some damage to the church, burned the church kind of thing. And the church was destroyed. And it was kind of sort of rebuilt. And then it was destroyed again in these riots in 532 A.D. and then rebuilt in 537 A.D., way after Chrysostom was gone, almost like 140 years after he was gone. Wow. The church was rebuilt a second time. So the church that is standing there today is the 537 A.D. church.

Wow. Now, what's very interesting about this church, very quickly, I want to tell you all this because it's so wonderful, and we have forgotten this information. When we went on this trip to Turkey, of course, I wanted to see Paul's visionary journeys. I wanted to see the seven cities of John in Asia Minor in the Book of Revelation.

I wanted to see those areas, which I didn't get to see much, to whom Peter wrote his letter. But I wanted to see the Hagia Sophia because this was our flagship church. This was a top-notch church. It was built by the head architect, okay, Antimius of Tralles of Hagia Sophia, who was a distinguished mathematician and physicist.

And he was assisted by Isidorus of Miletus, who was a great geometer, or geometrician, I guess you can say, of late antiquity. Those are the people who came together and created this magnificent building. And the total length is about 442 feet, and the floor area of the Hagia Sophia is about, let me just run it off, three and a half football fields.

Holy moly. That is big. That's a big floor plan. Yeah.

I mean, they went all out. And so this was it. And the dome has, still does, 40 windows at its base. So light coming in. So when you look up, I mean, it's like this, it looks like you're looking at the universe.

Oh, gosh, I bet that looks phenomenal. Well, cathedrals and buildings like this were built to remind people of the awesomeness of God. That's right. The bigness of God. That's why it's kind of annoying when people try to downplay the church building. They try to downplay the four walls that you worship in, because I don't know if it's like, well, I wish mine was bigger and it's not, or I just truly don't think it's that important. But that was their way of worship. And that still can be our way of worship to give God excellence. Going into that place enabled them to truly feel and sense how awesome God is.

The transcendence of God and then the imminence of God through Christ. He came near to us. He is with us. But then how is He also bringing the balance? How is He above and beyond? Or look at the cathedral and you look at those powerful walls and those domes and the ceilings and the painting and the mosaics, you go, oh my goodness. God is so much bigger than all this.

So that's what it did for them. Now, kind of shifting gears here. The pastor, the illustrious pastor is, of course, John Chrysostom.

That's who we're talking about. So he was born in Antioch on the Orentus, which is Antioch of Syria. It's still in Turkey, but it's right up there in the Syrian-Turkey border. Okay.

So it's right up there to the north. And he was born to Christian parents. Dad died young. Mom did not remarry.

She devoted her life to the children. And they sent him to study under a man by the name of Libanius. Now he was not an ordinary person. He was not a Christian.

Really? He was a pagan. Huh.

Yeah. What did he study? Chrysostom and Basil. Basil is a church father, a Cappadocian church father. Also Julian, the apostate emperor. I mean, this was an emperor who came up and said, you know what? We're going back. Let's bring back the old gods. Oh, Julian. Why would you do that? So he's known as Julian, the apostate.

Okay. Because he was the emperor who kind of, and then they had to go, okay, wait, wait, wait. We came out of the dark ages.

We cannot go back there. But they all studied under that pagan teacher. They studied under Libanius. And I have Libanius's work on my iPad time to time. I'll read it. I'll try to read it.

Just amazing. Was he a Christian scholar that just wasn't a believer? He didn't study the things of God? He didn't study theology and stuff like that? No, no, he was not.

He was not a believer at all. He was actually a pagan. So you just taught him like mathematics and architecture and like stuff like that? No, he taught them rhetoric.

Okay. How to speak. I mean, his works are available today. I mean, like I said, I have some on my Kindle and he's just a phenomenal teacher. So Chrysostom studied under him. He studied under the top notch speaker of the day who was trying to rival Athens in Greek rhetoric. He was trying to build a system of education in Antioch of Syria that would rival Athens.

And in some ways he did. I mean, you have the emperor studying under you? That's true. That's true. You're doing something right.

You're certainly esteemed if you've got the emperor. You're turning out people like that. I mean, Chrysostom had God's hand on him, but God used Libanius to teach him. So my word is, you know, sometimes you have to learn under people who may not share your values, but don't forget your values.

That's true. I love that you said that, that God used this pagan man to teach this phenomenal pastor speaker. You know, it reminds us that God is in control over everything. Even the things that are not Christian, the things that are outside of the church are not outside of God's will. God's plan and God's sovereignty.

So God superintended that event in Chrysostom's life to train him up under the premier scholar, even though he wasn't a believer. Right. Exactly. Yeah. That's what it means when it says you work all things together for good. Exactly. So he grew up under him very early on. He wanted to go into ministry, kind of went into kind of this monastic type life.

And his mom's like, please don't, please, but wait, wait till I'm dead before you go all out. And I mean, and he was going all out, but really, really, in a sense, you know, taking on this ascetic life, if you know what I mean by ascetic, like all detached from the world to such a point that he in some ways damaged his body. Really? Yeah. Wow. Because he was like really fasting, really putting himself.

Like just not eating, not drinking water. Stuff like that. Wow.

Really he damaged his body. But then, you know, after his mother passed away, he kind of joined the priesthood and he was made the priest in Antioch of Syria. Okay. By Bishop Flavian. Now that's important. I mentioned those names because there are things going to happen in Antioch where these two men have to work together.

Really? The guy who appointed Chrysostom, they start working side by side. So in 387 AD, the emperor at the time, he raised the taxes and stuff like that. And people went on riots. As they tend to do. In Antioch.

Right. And, you know, like if you remember some of the riots in Charlottesville and other places, you know, they went all out. They began to tear down statues. They began to smear the face of nothing new under the sun by the way. Of the emperor. They began to burn things and burn places. And I mean, they were going crazy. And so when this began to happen, the emperor at first sent in some archers, but when he did, everybody vanished.

It's like the little outline where the people were bleep, bleep, bleep. They're gone. And, you know, the streets are covered in, you know, all kinds of, you know, bronze, twisted bronze lying around. They just tore things down. Right. There's things burning in the street corners, crossroads, whatever. So everybody's gone.

So they're like, oh, well, just like people did today, but not back in those days. The emperor's like, oh, it's whooping time. There's going to be some whooping. It's time for this whooping. Let's go on.

Let's get this whooping out of the way. Yeah. And so the Roman soldiers descended on any of Syria. And, you know, they began to not just kill people, but they began to torture. And they made life very difficult before they ended.

And every day people are being dragged out of their homes and tortured and then killed. I mean, this was a punishment. This was like, now we'll teach you a lesson. I don't think this was a city of like a hundred people or 2000 people. No, several hundred thousand people. It was a half a million or so big city. But this was going to be like, we'll teach you a lesson you'll never forget.

So when this was happening, I mean, well-to-do homes, political homes, business people, Christians or not, doesn't matter, you know, somehow you're connected to these things or you didn't stop them. Come on. And so Bishop Flavian, Archbishop Flavian, he made a an 800 mile trek to Constantinople to beg the emperor to please let him go. To relent?

To relent. I mean, he begged. And while he is gone, Chrysostom was at home preaching to the people on the statues. Take him a stand? Well, he was more like telling them, you know, repent and change. And I want to see if I can find some of his messages at the time. But I mean, he was pretty much, you know, just begging them, you know, like come to your senses, your senses.

And here it is. He said, improve yourselves now, truly, not as when during one of the numerous earthquakes or in famine or drought or in similar visitations, you leave off your sinning for three or four days and then begin the old life again. Stop evil slandering, harbor no enmities and give up the wicked custom of frivolous cursing and swearing.

If you do this, you will surely be delivered from the present distress and attain eternal happiness. He's preaching, you know, his life out to them. And then about a week or two weeks later, now keep in mind, this is not like Bishop Flavian got on a plane and landed in Istanbul. Yeah, my man is gone for a little while. This jet sat over there real quick. I mean, he, but he, no, it was only two weeks. Really? But 800 miles. 800 miles in two weeks? Yeah, less than two weeks.

Some people say about a week. Wow. Wow. That, I mean, that shows you how, like, he's on the ship. Yeah, was he just like on, was he just like blitzkrieging over there? He took, he's gone. He took off. I mean, I don't know if they had a carriage for him.

I don't know if he had to walk. Who knows? Yeah. But 800 miles is a long way. Yeah.

I can't imagine being there in a week. That's insane. Back in those days, if I'm not wrong, a soldier would march about maybe 15, 20 miles, 20 miles a day.

Wow. So 20 miles a day. Divide 800 by 20 is how much? 40. Yeah, I think so. He did about 40. He was going like double what a soldier would march in a day and kept it up every single day.

Yeah. So Emperor relented, you know, okay, fine. And Archbishop Flavian came back home. I mean, he almost died. I think he died after that point.

He was never the same. Just from that trek. I can imagine. That's hard. That's hard work. Yeah.

Wow. But it really established Chrysostom as this powerful, powerful preacher who cared for his people, who fought for his people, along with his boss and saved a lot of lives. That's amazing.

That's amazing. And I think it also kind of sets that precedent that when he does become the pastor of the Hagia Sophia, people can look to him and those past deeds that he did and that past stand that he took and that begging of them to relent and say, this was a guy who really cares about the people. He really cares about us and he wants the best for us and God has put him here for a reason. He was not just a priest. He was their shepherd.

And so very quickly he got established. His name went from just some guy to Chrysostom, not Chrysostom, John of Antioch. Chrysostom means golden mouth. Stomas is mouth. Chrysos is gold.

So Chrysostom or Chrysostomos is golden mouth. That title was not given to him until about 150 years later. Maybe in his lifetime people said that, but it was not his title.

Yeah. They wouldn't have said, oh, that's pastor Chrysostom. Like if he were to go back in time and say, I want to hear Chrysostom preach. They'd be like, who? Who? They'd say he's John of Antioch.

John of Antioch. Okay. Yeah. So that is his story.

I would love to talk more about it. Yeah. You want to maybe do it on tomorrow's episode? Yeah. That'd be great. That's awesome. We can go through. Yeah. I love that. So let me give you a couple of quotations from John Chrysostom because his preaching was so powerful.

Okay. He was totally set against sin, but at the same time and focused on Christ, very much focused on Christ and his work, but he was also one of those who really chastised people for the abuse of wealth. Antioch was a rich city, so Christians were wealthy and he would chastise them. You know, the way you use your money, the way you don't care about the poor. But here's a quotation.

If you cannot find Christ in the beggar at the church door, you will not find him in the chalice. Wow. Wow. Yeah. Very true.

Very true. So, you know, think about that for a while. That's awesome. That's awesome. That's powerful.

And that, you know, that term golden mouth is just reflective of how well he spoke, but it's the impact that he had with his words. Here's another one. It is foolish in public madness to fill the cupboards with clothing and allow men who are created in God's image and our likeness to stand naked and trembling with the cold so that they can hardly hold themselves upright. You are large and fat.

You hold drinking parties until late at night and sleep in a warm, soft bed. And do you not think of how you must give an account of your misuse of the gifts of God? I like this guy, man. That's the type of preacher.

Oh, I love that one. I mean, I don't know how long he would last in our churches today. He was like, oh, you just, are you talking about me?

Yeah. And they just sit there nodding. I'll tell you what preacher, that stepped on my toes today. Toed preacher. I am large and fat. I am.

I am large and fat. But his people loved him, you know, loved him because they knew he, he genuinely cared for them and wanted them to know Christ. I think that's why people gravitate towards you as a preacher, because you, you do want, you tell the truth. And that's very rare, not only for people, but for preachers, even for pastors this day. So it's, it's rare for pastors to tell the truth.

It's even rare for pastors, rarer for pastors to tell the truth and love their people. Yes. Thank you. Thank you for saying that.

Absolutely. I can't wait to talk about, talk more about Chrysostom. If you guys have questions about today's topic, you want to learn more, send us a text to 252-582-5028. Or you can visit us online at Partner with us financially on that same website. Just click that donate button, join our Clear Read Today show family, and be a part of taking the gospel to the nations. We love you guys. We'll see you tomorrow on Clear Read Today.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-06-02 04:22:41 / 2023-06-02 04:35:34 / 13

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