Started by james03, January 23, 2023, 11:54:51 AM
Quote from: A1l. Sirach (15:14) says: "God made man from the beginning, and left him in the hand of his own counsel"; and the Gloss comments: "That is, in the power of his free choice." ...Without any doubt it must be affirmed that man is endowed with free choice. The faith obliges us to this, since without free choice there cannot be merit and demerit, or just punishment and reward. Clear indications, from which it appears that man freely chooses one thing and refuses another, also lead us to this. ...But man, judging about his course of action by the power of reason, can also judge about his own decision inasmuch as he knows the meaning of an end and of a means to an end, and the relationship of the one with reference to the other. Thus he is his own cause not only in moving but also in judging. He is therefore endowed with free choice—that is to say, with a free judgment about acting or not acting.
Quote from: A15(2) Because to prepare oneself for grace is just another way of saying: to do what one is capable of—as it is commonly said that, if a man does what he is capable of, God gives him grace. But a man is said to be capable of that which is within his power. If, then, a man is not able by his free choice to prepare himself for grace, to do what one is capable of will not mean to prepare oneself for grace. ...Thus, when a man begins to prepare himself for grace by turning his will to God for the first time, he must be brought to this by some external occasions, such as an external admonition or a bodily sickness or something of the sort, or else by some interior instinct, as God works in the hearts of men, or even in both ways together. All of this, however, is taken care of for man by divine providence; and so it comes about by divine mercy that man prepares himself for grace.