Author Topic: What is St. Thomas saying here?  (Read 577 times)

Offline John Lamb

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Re: What is St. Thomas saying here?
« Reply #15 on: November 28, 2018, 04:15:16 PM »
I think it is more or less every second of every day, or at least every moment that the free-will is active.

This is the "super secret magic power" view of grace.  St. Thomas gives a list of examples of actual graces.  In the past I used one example of this, listening to a moving sermon.  No, God is not sending you actual graces every second of every day.

From the Council of Orange:

195  Can. 22. "Those things which are peculiar to men. No one has anything of his own except lying and sin. But if man has any truth and justice, it is from that fountain for which we ought to thirst in this desert, that bedewed by some drops of water from it, we may not falter on the way" [St. Prosper].

196 Can. 23. "The good will of God and of man. Men do their own will, not God's, when they do what displeases God; but when they do what they wish, in order to serve the divine will, even though willingly they do what they do, nevertheless it is the will of Him by whom what they will is both prepared and ordered" [St. Prosper].

If God withdrew His grace entirely from human beings we would instantly become like beasts or devils. We can't even say "please" and "thank you" without God's grace, or do anything decent or natural to human beings, because our nature is so damaged by original sin that it requires God's grace to heal it so that we can even do what is natural to us. The fact that there are atheists and unbelievers who are not complete monsters only shows that God's grace is active in the lives even of those outside the Church, because if He wasn't in them at all they would be unfit for human society altogether. This isn't Lutheranism because Luther said that human nature was totally depraved so that it could never merit anything; whereas I'm agreeing with St. Augustine that it can merit, but only through the (constant) help of God's grace.
As many as received him, he gave them power to be made the sons of God, to them that believe in his name. (John 1:12)
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