Started by Bernadette, May 31, 2023, 06:23:41 AM
Quote from: Jmartyr on June 01, 2023, 02:28:47 PMhttps://williedoyle.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/08/scruples-and-their-treatment.pdf
Quote from: Jmartyr on June 01, 2023, 02:33:18 PMQuote from: Maximilian on May 31, 2023, 10:26:16 AMVery easy. I think especially for men....
Quote from: Maximilian on May 31, 2023, 10:26:16 AMVery easy.
Quote from: Robert on June 05, 2023, 12:03:13 AMIt depends. If God permissively wills that we fall into mortal sin, then it is quite easy to do so. If he wills to strengthen us with efficacious grace, then it is quite difficult to fall into mortal sin.If God were to will to confirm us perfectly in grace, then even venial sin would be impossible for us so long as he preserves us from it. Though such a gift is extraordinarily rare.
Quote from: Julio on June 05, 2023, 12:52:19 AMQuote from: Robert on June 05, 2023, 12:03:13 AMIt depends. If God permissively wills that we fall into mortal sin, then it is quite easy to do so. If he wills to strengthen us with efficacious grace, then it is quite difficult to fall into mortal sin.If God were to will to confirm us perfectly in grace, then even venial sin would be impossible for us so long as he preserves us from it. Though such a gift is extraordinarily rare.We need our will to cooperate with Him to effectuate that predistination of God's will on us. Our will is exclusively ours so by cooperating to His will we can make the commission of mortal sin difficult by the Grace of God.
QuoteEfficacious grace (in the Thomistic view) precedes and infallibly brings about such co-operation without harming the will's freedom
QuoteNothing is left, then, but that the man who is doing the acting is himself the principle of his own acts, and consequently has free choice. ... Just as heavy and light bodies do not move themselves so as to be by that fact the cause of their own motion, so too brutes do not judge about their own judgment but follow the judgment implanted in them by God. Thus they are not the cause of their own decision nor do they have freedom of choice. 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: james03 on June 12, 2023, 01:23:55 PMQuoteEfficacious grace (in the Thomistic view) precedes and infallibly brings about such co-operation without harming the will's freedomThat's not the "Thomistic" view and St. Thomas never used the term Efficacious.QuoteNothing is left, then, but that the man who is doing the acting is himself the principle of his own acts, and consequently has free choice. ... Just as heavy and light bodies do not move themselves so as to be by that fact the cause of their own motion, so too brutes do not judge about their own judgment but follow the judgment implanted in them by God. Thus they are not the cause of their own decision nor do they have freedom of choice. 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: ST I 23.5On the contrary, The Apostle says (Titus 3:5): "Not by works of justice which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us." But as He saved us, so He predestined that we should be saved. Therefore, foreknowledge of merits is not the cause or reason of predestination.I answer that, Since predestination includes will, as was said above (A), the reason of predestination must be sought for in the same way as was the reason of the will of God. Now it was shown above (Q, A ), that we cannot assign any cause of the divine will on the part of the act of willing; but a reason can be found on the part of the things willed; inasmuch as God wills one thing on account of something else. Wherefore nobody has been so insane as to say that merit is the cause of divine predestination as regards the act of the predestinator. But this is the question, whether, as regards the effect, predestination has any cause; or what comes to the same thing, whether God pre-ordained that He would give the effect of predestination to anyone on account of any merits.
Quote from: SCG Book IIICHAPTER XC: THAT HUMAN CHOICE AND WILL ARE SUBJECT TO DIVINE PROVIDENCEHENCE it follows that human will and choice are subject to divine providence.For whatsoever God does, He does according to the order of His providence. Wherefore, since He is the cause of our choice and will, these are subject to divine providence.Moreover. All corporeal things are governed by means of spiritual things, as we have shown above. Now spiritual things act on corporeal things by their will. Consequently if the acts of choice and will in intellectual substances are not the concern of God's providence, it follows that corporeal things also are withdrawn from His providence: so that there will be no providence at all.Besides. The higher a thing is placed in the universe, the more must it participate in the order in which the good of the universe consists. Hence Aristotle (2 Phys. iv.) reproaches the ancient philosophers for admitting chance and luck in the scheme of the heavenly bodies, but not in the things of the lower world. Now intellectual substances hold a higher place than corporeal substances. Therefore if corporeal substances, as regards their essence and operation, are included in the order of providence, much more so are intellectual substances.Again. Those things which are nearest to the end are more subject to the order whereby things are directed to the end, since by their means even other things are ordered to the end. Now the actions of intellectual substances are more intimately ordered to God in their end, than the actions of other things, as we have proved above. Therefore the actions of intellectual substances come under the order of providence, whereby God directs all things to Himself, more than the actions of other things.Further. The government of providence proceeds from God's love for the things created by Him: for love consists chiefly in this, that the lover desires the good of the beloved. Consequently the more God loves a thing, the more it comes under His providence. This is the teaching of Holy Writ, Ps. cxliv. 20 where it is said: The Lord keepeth all them that love Him: and the Philosopher also says (10 Ethic. viii.) that God cares most for those who love the intellect, as being His friends: from which we may conclude that He loves intellectual substances most of all. Therefore their acts of will and choice are the object of His providence.Moreover. Man's interior goods which depend on his will and action, are more proper to man than external goods, such as acquiring wealth, and the like: wherefore a man is said to be good in respect of the former and not of the latter. Consequently if human choice and the movements of man's will do not come under divine providence, but only external happenings, it will be truer to say that human affairs are not the concern of providence than that they are. But the former saying is put into the mouth of blasphemers (Job xxii. 14): He doth not consider our things, and he walketh about the poles of heaven, and (Ezech. ix. 9): The Lord hath forsaken the earth, and the Lord seeth not, and (Lament. iii. 37): Who is he that hath commanded a thing to be done, when the Lord commandeth it not?Some passages in the Holy Doctrine might seem to give utterance to that opinion. Thus it is said (Ecclus. xv. 14): God made man from the beginning and left him in the hand of his own counsel, and further on (17, 18): He hath set water and fire before thee: stretch forth thy hand to which thou wilt. Before man is life and death, good and evil; that which he shall choose shall be given him. Also (Deut. xxx. 15): Consider that I have set before thee this day life and good, and on the other hand death and evil. – But these words indicate that man has a free-will, not that his choice is withdrawn from divine providence.Likewise the statement of Gregory of Nyssa in his book On Man: Providence regards those things that are not in our power, and not those that are: and the saying of Damascene, who followed him, in the Second Book, that God knows but does not predetermine the things which are in our power, are to be understood as meaning that the things which are in our power are not subject to the divine predetermination in such a way as to be necessitated thereby.
Quote from: SCG Book IIICHAPTER CLIX: THAT, ALTHOUGH MAN CANNOT BE CONVERTED TO GOD WITHOUT GOD'S GRACE, YET IT IS REASONABLY IMPUTED TO HIM, IF HE BE NOT CONVERTEDSINCE, without the aid of divine grace, man cannot be directed to his last end, as we have shown in the preceding chapters; and seeing that without it man can have none of the things required that he may tend to his last end, such as faith, hope, love, and perseverance; someone might think that man is not to be blamed if he lack the things in question: and especially because man cannot merit the assistance of divine grace, nor be converted to God unless God convert him: since no one is blamed for what depends on another. But, if this be granted, it is clear that several absurdities follow. For it would follow that a man without faith, or hope, or love of God, or perseverance in good, is not deserving of punishment: whereas it is said expressly (Jo. iii. 36): He that believeth not in the Son, shall not see life, but the wrath of God abideth on him. – And since no man obtains beatitude without these things, it would also follow that there are some who neither obtain beatitude from God, nor suffer punishment from Him. Whereas the contrary is proved from the words of Matth. xxv. 34-41, where we are told that to all who are present at God's judgement it will be said, Come . . . possess the kingdom prepared for you; or Depart . . . into everlasting fire.In order to clear away this doubt, we must take note that, though a man is unable, by the movement of his freewill, to merit or acquire the divine grace, nevertheless he can hinder himself from receiving it. For it is said of some (Job xxi. 14): Who have said to God: Depart from us; we desire not the knowledge of Thy ways: and (ibid. xxiv. 13): They have been rebellious to the light. And since it is in the power of the free-will, to hinder or not to hinder the reception of divine grace, he who places an obstacle in the way of his receiving grace is deservedly to be blamed. Because God, for His own part, is prepared to give grace to all, for He will have all men to be saved, and to come to the knowledge of the truth (1 Tim. ii. 4). But those alone are deprived of grace, who place in themselves an obstacle to grace: thus he who shuts his eyes while the sun is shining is to be blamed if an accident occurs, although he is unable to see unless the sun's light enable him to do so.CHAPTER CLX: THAT A MAN WHO IS IN SIN CANNOT AVOID SIN WITHOUT GRACETHE statement that it is in the power of the free-will to offer no obstacle to grace, applies to those in whom the natural power retains its integrity. If however, through some previous disorder, it has turned aside to evil ways, it will not be wholly in its power to place no obstacles to grace. For though man, by his own power, is able to refrain at a certain moment, from a particular sinful act: yet if he be left to himself for long, he will fall into sin, whereby an obstacle to grace is set up. Because when the human mind has turned aside from the path of rectitude, it is clear that it has abandoned the direction to its due end. Consequently that which should stand first in its affections, as its last end, becomes less loved than the thing to which the mind has inordinately turned as though it were its last end. Hence whenever something presents itself that is suitable for an inordinate end, and incompatible with the right end, it will be chosen, unless the mind be brought into right order, so that it places its last end before all: and this is the effect of grace. But as long as a thing is chosen that is incompatible with the last end, an obstacle is opposed to grace which directs us to our end. Wherefore it is evident that, after having sinned, man cannot refrain from all sin, before being restored to the right order by grace.Again. Once the mind is inclined to something, it is no longer equally disposed towards either of two opposites, but is more disposed to that one to which it is inclined. Now, the mind chooses the thing to which it is more disposed, unless through the reason discussing the matter, it become disinclined thereto from motives of precaution: hence it is chiefly under unforeseen circumstances that a person's conduct is a sign of his interior disposition. Now, it is not possible for a man's mind to be continually so wide awake as to deliberate about everything that is to be willed or done. Hence it follows that sometimes the mind chooses the object to which it is inclined, because the inclination remains. And so, if it be inclined to sin, it will not stay long without sinning, through placing an obstacle to grace, unless it be restored to the state of rectitude.To this also the impulse of the bodily passions conduces; also objects of sensible appetite, and occasions of evil-doing: for by these things man is easily incited to sin, unless he be held in check by a firm adherence to his last end, which is the effect of grace.Hence we can see the absurdity of the opinion of the Pelagians, who held that man, while in a state of sin, is able to avoid sin without grace. The contrary of this may be gathered from the petition of the Psalm (lxx. 9): When my strength shall fail, do not Thou forsake me. Moreover our Lord taught us to pray: And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.However, albeit those who are in sin cannot, of their own power, avoid placing an obstacle to grace, as we have proved, unless they be assisted by prevenient grace; nevertheless this is imputed to them as sin, because the defect in question remains in them through their preceding fault: even so a drunken man is not excused from murder committed through his being in a drunken state, which he incurred through his own fault.Moreover, although a man who is in sin, has it not in his power to avoid sin altogether, yet it is in his power to avoid a particular sin at a given moment, as we have said. Hence, whatever sin he commits, he commits it deliberately. Consequently it is not undeservedly imputed to him as a sin.CHAPTER CLXI: THAT GOD DELIVERS SOME FROM SIN, AND LEAVES SOME IN SINNow, though he that sins places an obstacle to grace, and so far as the order of things demands, ought not to receive grace: yet, since God can act independently of the order implanted in things, as when He enlightens the blind, or raises the dead, sometimes of the richness of his bounty, He comes to the assistance of those who put an obstacle in the way of grace, turns them from evil, and converts them to good. And even as He enlightens not all the blind, nor heals all the sick, in order that in those whom He restores the work of His power may be evidenced, and in the others, the order of nature be maintained; so too, He comes not to the assistance of all who hinder grace, that they may turn away from evil, and be converted to good; but of some, in whom He wishes His mercy to appear; while in the others the order of justice is made manifest. Hence the Apostle says (Rom. ix. 22): God willing to show His wrath, and to make His power known, endured with much patience vessels of wrath, fitted for destruction, that he might show the riches of His glory on the vessels of mercy, which He hath prepared unto glory. And if of those who are held in thrall by sins God converts some by His prevenient grace, while others He suffers or allows, in the ordinary way, to continue sinning, we are not to ask why He converts certain ones and not others. For this depends on His simple will: even as it came from His simple will, that whereas all things were made out of nothing, some were made to rank higher than others: and just as it depends on the simple will of the craftsman that of the same matter similarly conditioned, He make some vessels for dignified purposes, and some for common purposes. Hence the apostle says (Rom. ix. 21): Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour?Hereby we refute the error of Origen who said that these are converted to God and not those, on account of certain works done by their souls before they were united to bodies. In the Second Book, we gave more particular attention to the refutation of this opinion.CHAPTER CLXII: THAT GOD IS NOT THE CAUSE OF ANY MAN SINNINGALTHOUGH God converts not certain sinners to Himself, but leaves them in their sins, as they deserve to be, yet He does not lead them to sin.For man sins through wandering away from Him who is his last end, as we have already shown. Now, as every agent acts for an end proper and proportionate to it, it is impossible that God, by His own action, turn anyone away from his last end, which is God. Therefore it is impossible that God make any man sin.Again. Good cannot be a cause of evil. Now sin is man's evil: for it is contrary to man's proper good, which is to live according to reason. Therefore God cannot be the cause of a man sinning.Further. All human wisdom and goodness flow from the divine wisdom and goodness, and are a kind of likeness thereof. Now it is incompatible with human wisdom and goodness, to make a man sin. Much more therefore is it incompatible with divine wisdom.Moreover. All sin arises from a fault in the proximate agent, and not from the influence of the first agent: thus the fault of limping is due to a defect in the tibia, and not to the motive power; to which, however, is due whatever there is of the perfection of movement in limping. Now, the proximate agent in human sin is the will. Therefore the defect of sin arises from man's will and not from God, who is the first agent: although whatever pertains to the perfection of action in the sinful act is due to Him.Hence it is said (Ecclus. xv. 12): Say not: He hath caused me to err: for He hath no need of wicked men: and further on (verse 21): He hath commanded no man to do wickedly, and He hath given to no man license to sin. Also (James i. 13): Let no man, when he is tempted, say that he is tempted by God: for God is not a tempter of evils.There are, however, a few passages in Scripture which would seem to indicate that, to some, God is the cause of their sinning. For it is said (Exod. x. 1): I have hardened Pharaoh's heart and the heart of his servants: and (Isa. vi. 10): Blind the heart of this people, make their ears heavy: lest they see with their eyes . . . and be converted, and I heal them: and (ibid. lxiii. 17): Thou hast made us to err from Thy ways: . . . thou hast hardened our heart, that we should not fear Thee. Again it is said (Rom. i. 28): God delivered them up to a reprobate sense, to do those things which are not convenient. All these passages are to be understood in the sense that God does not assist some to avoid sin, whereas He does assist others.This assistance is not only the infusion of grace, but also external protection whereby occasions of sin are warded off by divine providence, and incentives to sin restrained. God also assists man against sin by the natural light of reason and the other natural goods which He bestows on man. Hence when He withdraws these aids from some men, as their actions merit, according to the demands of His justice, He is said to harden their hearts or blind their eyes, or deal with them in some other way as described in the passages above quoted.CHAPTER CLXIII: OF PREDESTINATION, REPROBATION, AND THE DIVINE ELECTIONWHEREAS we have proved that by the divine operation some are with the assistance of grace directed to their last end, while others fail to reach their last end through being deprived of grace: and since all that God does has been foreseen and ordered from eternity by His wisdom, as we have proved: it follows of necessity that the aforesaid distinction among men has been ordered by God from eternity. Inasmuch as from eternity He has preordained some to be directed to their last end, He is said to have predestined them. Wherefore the Apostle says (Ephes. i. 5): Who hath predestined us unto the adoption of children . . . according to the purpose of his will. – Those to whom from eternity He has decreed not to give grace, He is said to have reprobated, or to have hated, according to the words of Malachi 2, 3, I have loved Jacob, but have hated Esau. – By reason of this very distinction, in that He has reprobated some and predestined others, we have the divine election, of which it is said (Ephes. i. 4): He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world.Wherefore it is clear that predestination, election and reprobation form a part of divine providence, in reference to man's direction to his last end by divine providence. Consequently it may be shown that predestination and election do not involve necessity, for the same reasons as were employed to show that divine providence does not deprive things of their contingent nature.That predestination and election are not founded on any human merits may be made clear, not only from the fact that God's grace, which is an effect of predestination, is not preceded by merits, but itself precedes all human merits, as we have proved: but also from the fact that the will and providence of God are the first cause of whatever is done; and nothing can be the cause of the divine will and providence, although among the effects of providence, as also of predestination, one may be the cause of another. For, as the apostle says, WHO HATH FIRST GIVEN HIM, AND RECOMPENSE SHALL BE MADE HIM? FOR OF HIM, AND IN HIM, AND BY HIM ARE ALL THINGS: TO HIM BE HONOUR AND GLORY FOR EVER. AMEN.