“What had caused the debate and disagreement between the Greeks and Latins in the conferences [at Florrence] on Purgatory was not the question of the middle state after death, but if there is punishment by fire in the middle state. The Latins argued that there is such punishment.” Constantine Tsirpanlis, Mark Eugenicus and the Council of Florence, 78.
“Mark refutes entirely punishment by [a created] fire in the middle state as opposed to and unattested by the Holy Scriptures and the tradition of the Church. The Latin argument from Scripture is of no avail because neither does the Book of Maccabees nor St. Matthew mention fire, and St. Paul in speaking of fire means, as St. John Chrysostom clearly shows [PG 61, 75-82, 361], the eternal fire of hell, not the temporary punishment of fire in Purgatory.” 79.
“Mark asserts that no Greek or Latin Church Father teaches the punitive or purgatorial fire in the middle state. Their references to suffering by fire after this life must be interpreted not literally, but symbolically, namely as eternal deprivation of God’s vision and bliss, as an unceasing remorse, shame, and uncertainty for the future.” 80.
“Finally, the ratio theologica [that rationally divine justice demands punishment] of the Latins, as implying a legalistic conception of satisfaction of divine justice by the punishment of fire in the middle state, is disagreeable to the almost universal view of the Greek Fathers, which held that sin is essentially a personal pathos and guilt and that Adam’s misdeed was not a collective sin of the human race but was rather a corruption of human nature. Men’s personal responsibility does not come into the picture, except in so far as they imitate Adam; their only congenital inheritance from him is corruption and death which, in turn lead them to sin; men are thus involved in a sort of vicious circle of death and sin.” 81-82
“Mark’s main argument against the Latin distinction between guilt and retribution is based on the Aristotelian concept of relationship between cause and causation, (αιτιον and αιτιατον); as long as sin is forgiven punishment is not required, because that which (sin) demanded punishment has been dissolved. The Latins, on the other hand, argued that even after the forgiveness of sin, punishment is required in order to satisfy divine justice since God’s holiness was offended by sin.
To the Latin objection that the soul in the middle state, although immaterial or bodiless, can be punished by material fire (such punishment being most appropriate to the divine power and justice), Mark replies that it would be more reasonable, more just and more consistent, if the soul together with its own body would be punished, not separately, since together they had committed sin. Basing himself especially on the Scriptural doctrine [Heb 11:39-40] that the souls of the just and the damned do not enter into their eternal destiny directly after death, but await the final Judgement, Mark categorically refutres double punishment and double fire as contrary to the teaching of the fifth ecumenical council and to the patristic theology of the primitive Church.” 83.