Certain familiar words are used in a special way and may be unfamiliar to some. This Chapter consists of a definition of terms and a brief explanation of those spiritual terms upon this e-book has been written.
Today when one enters into a conversation about faith, a certain amount of religious or spiritual jargon and clichés is bound to be expressed. A conversation about faith can be difficult and almost impossible if some acceptable terminology is not agreed upon. Different terms convey different thoughts to different people. Even bishops and theologians, within the same faith, do not always agree on precise meanings of terms. often, it is difficult to put faith into words.
Our minds have by their nature, a participation in the intelligence of God. God's light sheds knowledge on the conclusions of all rational discussion. Words can be misused and represented. Words can be both true and at the same time 'false. Language may become a suspicious instrument on the tongues of false teachers, fools and charlatans. Language in all forms is still all we have. Language retains all its power to signify and communicate the Truth.
ANGELS - Created spirits without bodies, having understanding and free will. inferior to God and superior to mankind. According to the Bible, they are endowed with great power and intellect. They take human form for the purpose of delivering some message to man from God. They are usually described as young men robed in dazzling white. only three Angels are named in Scripture ... Raphael, Gabriel and Michael. Apocryphal Jewish books refer to Angels called Uriel and Jeremiiel. Some other Bible terms accepted regarding Angels are: Morning Stars, Holy Ones, and Multitudes of Heaven, Myriad's.
ANGEL OF THE LORD - (Also Angel of God) An Angel. A self-manifestation of God. Seen by some as true Theophany, by others as the pre incarnate Logos or Word of God, the pre incarnated appearance of Jesus Christ.
ANGEL OF DEATH - identified in the Jewish Talmud with Satan and with yezer ha-ra (evil inclination). Symbolizes the demoniac forces, responsible for Adams fail, which continues to fight his descendants.
ANGELOPHANY - Manifestation or visible apparition of Angels.
APOCRYPHAL WRITINGS - (300 BC to 100 AD) Containing thirteen books: I and 11 Esdras, Tobit, Judith, the rest of Esther, the Wisdom of Solomon, Ecclesiastics (the Wisdom of Jesus the son of Sirach), Baruch, the Letter of Jeremiah, the Additions to Daniel, the Prayer of Manasses, and I and II Maccabees. Jews uniformly denied canonical status to these books, and so they were not found in the Hebrew Bible. The Council of Carthage (397 AD) which St. Augustine attended, agreed to accept the writings as suitable for reading only.
Then in 1548, the Council of Trent recognized the Apocrypha, excepting I and 11 Esdras and the Prayer of Manasses, as having unqualified canonical status. Luther regarded the writings as "profitable and good to read." The Coverdale and Geneva Bibles included the writings but set them apart from the canonical books of the Old Testament. Today only the Anglican Church makes much use of them .
APPARITION - An appearance of someone either by vision or by bodily manifestation that is permitted by God. The appearance of our Lady of Fatima or Lourdes is an apparition. Joseph's vision where he was told to flee with the child into Egypt was an apparition.
AURA - A pre-Christian belief that the outline of a person's spirit body extending beyond the flesh shows energy or colors of light. A new type of high voltage photography called Kirlian has shown auras around living life forms. Varying in size, shape and color according to the condition of the object. When living animals and plants die, their brilliant colorful auras, photographed before death, are said to fade out and disappear. Some psychics claim to tell a persons emotional state by the color of their aura. (See halo.)
BEATIFICATION - The process resulting in the declaration by the Church that a person of saintly life or heroic death may be called "Blessed" and considered to be in heaven.
BEELZEBUB - A New Testament name given to Satan
BLESSED TRINITY - The three persons in one God. The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are all one in God, each distinct. All life begins in the Trinity, comes from the Trinity and is destined to end in the Trinity
BODY - The material and physical state of man. it is the temple of the Holy Spirit.
BODY AND SOUL - The whole man. Both body and soul are incomplete in themselves but when united they form man, a complete substance. The physical body is dead without the soul living within. Life is the manifestation of the unity of the body and soul.
BODY GLORIFIED - The body that will be assumed by the soul at the end of the world. it is immortal and incorruptible. (1COR 15:53) We are created body and soul, and to exist as a disembodied spirit would be contrary to our created nature.
CHERUBIM - One of the nine classes of Angels ranked below the Seraphim. (See choirs).
CHOIRS - Choirs of Angels (Nine) - The whole company of Angels arranged in hierarchic order. They are, 1 -Seraphim, 2-Cherubim, 3-Thrones, 4-Domination's, 5-Virtues, 6-Powers, 7-Principalities, 8-Archangels, and 9-Angels. These nine choirs are divided into three orders. The first three are the closest to God and are sometimes called Counselors. The middle three are sometimes called Rulers because their names indicate a certain governing power. The last three are spoken of as Workers, God's messengers, and among them are the guardian Angels. Since Pope Gregory the Great (604 AD), the teaching of the Nine Choirs of Angels has been accepted in the Roman Catholic Church.
CHURCH - Comprises the body and soul of the Mystical Body of Jesus Christ on earth. (See Mystical Body.)
DEMON - A person or thing regarded as evil or cruel. Usually applied to a messenger or minister of the Devil. Often sickness is referred to as a demon, either mental or physical. Some theologians surmise that damned souls may become demons. They become part of the evil spirit world ruled by Lucifer and do his bidding. Some religions interpret Nephilim (offspring of sinful Angels in the time of Noah) as demons.
DEVIL - A fallen Angel, purely spiritual, cut off from God due to the sin or rebellion by choice of free will. Other names often used are Evil Spirit, Satan, Beelzebub, Evil One, Legion, Antichrist, Serpent, Lion, Dragon, Beast, Lucifer, Unclean spirit, Demon, Enemy.
DIABOLICAL - To tear apart and destroy unity.
DIVINATION -- The foretelling of uncertain future events or the discovery of what is hidden or obscure by supernatural or magical means. The word has a sinister signification. Prophecy is the accepted by the Church as knowledge of the future. Divination, its superstitious counterpart, is the not accepted..
DISCERNMENT - The act of determining whether a person is acting genuinely from a virtue and grace of God or only simulating the virtue or is influenced by the Devil. The ability to discriminate between the false and the true spirits is a "gift of discernment of spirits." This may be an acquired gift or an infused gift of God. Mentioned by St. Paul in (1 COR 12:10, 1 COR 14:29, GAL 5:19-23, 1 JN 4:1-6).
DOMINATION'S - Also called dominions, one of the choirs of Angels.
EVIL SPIRIT - The fallen Angels and other condemned spirits associated with Satan. (The souls of humans who died in the state of evil and deviation.)
GOD - The one supreme and infinite personal being, the creator and ruler of the universe which consists of all nature, physical and supernatural, which can be seen and not seen, to whom man owes obedience and worship. God is also expressed as the Way, the Eternal Truth. the Eternal Light, the Law, a Power greater than self.
GIANTS - (See Nephilim)
GUARDIAN ANGEL - The belief that an individual Angel is assigned to each person to watch over and protect them. From the beginning of life to death, and to act as an intermediary between that person and God. The Church encourages prayer to one's guardian Angel. Pope Clement X approved a feast for the guardian Angels for the Western Church to be celebrated on October 2.
HEART - Both in Scripture and common usage heart presupposes the very center of everything. The heart of a person is then considered to be the very center of his total being. The center of a person's emotions, moral life, desire, judgment and will. To say we love God with all our heart would then mean that we love God totally. We love Him with all our (physical) mind, body and strength. We also love God with all the (spiritual) facilities of the soul.
HALO - A circle or solid disk around the head. Used by artists to make representations of the blessed, saints and Angels of God. it is of pre Christian origin and was used to denote power and majesty. (See aura.)
HOLY ONES - Often referred to as the early followers of God, the Church, saints and Angels. (See hosts.)
HOLY SPIRIT - The third person of the Blessed Trinity. The spirit of the Father and Son, moving in a common spirit. Symbolized by a dove or tongues of fire.
HOST - Multitude or gathering. The consecrated bread used in the Eucharistic Liturgy of the Mass.
HOSTS - Hosts of Angels or Hosts of Heaven. Those celestial beings who accompany and serve God. JB 38:7, LK 2:13 ) Also referred to as Army of Heaven. The Old Testament refers to stars. It sometimes refers to astral deities. The Bible passage section includes this term when implying Angels. Some Bible passages may imply not only Angels, but saints.
ISRAEL - "Strong with the Law." The name given to Jacob when he wrestled with an Angel.
LIFE- The possession of those forces which makes the owner capable of self-movement. There are three types of life: vegetable, sensitive and intellectual.
LOGOS - (See Word.) 250
LUCIFER- "Angel of Light." The Angel in heaven who rebelled against God. An Angel of the highest order (Seraphim). Reigns now as the chief of fallen Angels and became the Angel of darkness, Satan.
MAN- Person, mankind. A physical creature composed of body and soul. A rational animal. The soul has been given to man by God's creative act. it is immortal and its rational quality is spiritual. The Bible often mentions apparitions or visions of men or young men. (See apparitions and visions.)
MICHAEL- "Who is like God". This Angel is the Angel warrior of Israel. An Archangel.
MESSENGERS- Someone bringing a communication from the originator. This can be in a physical or spiritual sense, such as man to man or from God to man, by use of God's Angels.
MYRIAD'S- Means a very large number. Consisting of a great number, innumerable, endless. (See hosts.)
MYSTICAL BODY- The spiritual and physical body of the Church established by Jesus Christ. Spiritually, which Christ is the head, the Holy Spirit is the soul, and the faithful, the living, and the dead are the members. Physically, instituted. In a comprehensive sense, the body embraces all mankind. In a stricter sense, we enter the Church, only through Baptism of water, blood or desire.
NEPHILIM- Some religions interpret this term to mean disobedient Angels who materialized, married women and fathered a hybrid generation (demons) in the time of Noah. (GN 6:4) The term "giants' is often used in place of Nephilim. Most Christian religions interpret this to refer to a race of men noted for their strength and cruelty in those days.
PRINCIPALITIES- God's ordinary and immediate servants to the world. (See Choirs)
POWERS- The Angels who compose the lowest choir of the celestial hierarchy. (See choirs)
RAPHAEL - "Medicine of God" or "God Heals." The book of Tobias 12:6,15.
RESURRECTED BODY - It is Catholic dogma that the body will be resurrected and reunited with the soul. This will take place immediately before the last judgment.
SAINT - A member of the Church who by an exemplary life of holiness and virtue has been officially listed in the role of saints by the Church following the processes of beatification and canonization. To whom we may render veneration.
SATAN - A proper name given to the Devil. (See also Lucifer.) SERAPHS - (See Seraphim.)
SERAPHIM- Highest of the nine choirs of Angels. (IS 6:2-3) describes them as attendants at the throne of God where they sing His praise.
SONS OF GOD- A term often used to describe Angels. Most often refers to pious men or spiritual men in contrast to worldly or natural men. The Israelites are also called "Sons of God." Christians are "Sons of God" through Christ. (JN 1:12, ROM 8:17, GAL 4:6) The Bible passage section includes this term when implying Angels.
SOUL - The principle of life in scholastic philosophy the soul is understood as the animating principle for any body (plant, animal or human). Less technically, it is taken as the principle of such spiritual activities such as thinking and willing, it is immortal.
SPIRIT - That being which can exist outside a material body. The life principle.
STARRY HOSTS - Term used to make reference to Angels by some religions. The term star or stars is used when meaning the created heavens. (See Hosts.)
THEOLOGY - The sacred science of God and all thoughts about God. It has several branches: Ascetical, Dogmatic, Moral, Mystical, Natural, Positive and Pastoral.
Ascetical deals with the efforts necessary to acquire Christian perfection. Dogmatic doctrine deals with the truths of what we must believe about God. Moral shows how man must respond to God's love by cultivating the divine life He has given us to share. Mystical deals with infused or passive contemplation with God. Natural directs us to God through the use of human reason apart from revelation. Positive is the study of doctrines contained in the sources of revelation, scripture and tradition. Pastoral, deals with the care of souls by priests who work actively with the people.
THEOPHANY- The name given to various visible or auditory manifestations of God to man. it is held that these appearances were through Angels representing God and speaking for Him. These manifestations, are recorded in the Old Testament. (GN 3:8, GN 12:7, GN 24:2, EX 3:2t 19:20, IGS 6:2) Since it is the message of God that is emphasized in sacred writings, the physical aspects are not described) in detail. The incarnated Jesus Christ can be considered a permanent manifestation or Theophany.
THRONES - The third choir of Angels. With the Cherubim and Seraphim, they form the court of God. (COL 1: 1 6) (See choirs)
VISION - A supernatural manifestation that is perceived by the eyes or in the imagination or in the intellect. Ascetical writers counsel that visions should not be sought after because of the possibility of deception. They may be counterfeited by the Devil or be the result of a psychosis or hysteria.
WORD - A term used only by St. John to refer to Christ. It also frequently appears in the Greek form Logos. John uses the term to signify Christ is of one nature with the Father and yet a separate person. Logos means not only "the word" but also the thought expressed by the word. Christ is the thought of God. According to (JN 1:1 - 1 8) the Logos was already present in the beginning of creation. And in (JN 1:14) became incarnate, revealing the sign of God's presence and His nature.