Table of Contents | Words: Alphabetical - Frequency - Inverse - Length - Statistics | Help | IntraText Library
St. Thomas Aquinas
Summa Theologica

IntraText CT - Text

  • SECOND PART
    • Aquin.: SMT FS Prologue Para. 1/1 - FIRST PART OF THE SECOND PART (FS) (QQ[1]-114)
      • Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] Out. Para. 1/3 - TREATISE ON GRACE (QQ[109]-114)
Previous - Next

Click here to hide the links to concordance


Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] Out. Para. 1/3 - TREATISE ON GRACE (QQ[109]-114)


OF THE NECESSITY OF GRACE (TEN ARTICLES)

We must now consider the exterior principle of human acts, i.e. God, in
so far as, through grace, we are helped by Him to do right: and, first,
we must consider the grace of God; secondly, its cause; thirdly, its
effects.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] Out. Para. 2/3

The first point of consideration will be threefold: for we shall
consider (1) The necessity of grace; (2) grace itself, as to its essence;
(3) its division.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] Out. Para. 3/3

Under the first head there are ten points of inquiry:

(1) Whether without grace man can know anything?

(2) Whether without God's grace man can do or wish any good?

(3) Whether without grace man can love God above all things?

(4) Whether without grace man can keep the commandments of the Law?

(5) Whether without grace he can merit eternal life?

(6) Whether without grace man can prepare himself for grace?

(7) Whether without grace he can rise from sin?

(8) Whether without grace man can avoid sin?

(9) Whether man having received grace can do good and avoid sin without
any further Divine help?

(10) Whether he can of himself persevere in good?


Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[1] Thes. Para. 1/1

Whether without grace man can know any truth?

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[1] Obj. 1 Para. 1/1

OBJ 1: It would seem that without grace man can know no truth. For, on 1
Cor. 12:3: "No man can say, the Lord Jesus, but by the Holy Ghost," a
gloss says: "Every truth, by whomsoever spoken is from the Holy Ghost."
Now the Holy Ghost dwells in us by grace. Therefore we cannot know truth
without grace.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[1] Obj. 2 Para. 1/1

OBJ 2: Further, Augustine says (Solil. i, 6) that "the most certain
sciences are like things lit up by the sun so as to be seen. Now God
Himself is He Whom sheds the light. And reason is in the mind as sight is
in the eye. And the eyes of the mind are the senses of the soul." Now the
bodily senses, however pure, cannot see any visible object, without the
sun's light. Therefore the human mind, however perfect, cannot, by
reasoning, know any truth without Divine light: and this pertains to the
aid of grace.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[1] Obj. 3 Para. 1/1

OBJ 3: Further, the human mind can only understand truth by thinking, as
is clear from Augustine (De Trin. xiv, 7). But the Apostle says (2 Cor.
3:5): "Not that we are sufficient to think anything of ourselves, as of
ourselves; but our sufficiency is from God." Therefore man cannot, of
himself, know truth without the help of grace.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[1] OTC Para. 1/1

On the contrary, Augustine says (Retract. i, 4): "I do not approve
having said in the prayer, O God, Who dost wish the sinless alone to know
the truth; for it may be answered that many who are not sinless know many
truths." Now man is cleansed from sin by grace, according to Ps. 50:12:
"Create a clean heart in me, O God, and renew a right spirit within my
bowels." Therefore without grace man of himself can know truth.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[1] Body Para. 1/3

I answer that, To know truth is a use or act of intellectual light,
since, according to the Apostle (Eph. 5:13): "All that is made manifest
is light." Now every use implies movement, taking movement broadly, so as
to call thinking and willing movements, as is clear from the Philosopher
(De Anima iii, 4). Now in corporeal things we see that for movement there
is required not merely the form which is the principle of the movement or
action, but there is also required the motion of the first mover. Now
the first mover in the order of corporeal things is the heavenly body.
Hence no matter how perfectly fire has heat, it would not bring about
alteration, except by the motion of the heavenly body. But it is clear
that as all corporeal movements are reduced to the motion of the heavenly
body as to the first corporeal mover, so all movements, both corporeal
and spiritual, are reduced to the simple First Mover, Who is God. And
hence no matter how perfect a corporeal or spiritual nature is supposed
to be, it cannot proceed to its act unless it be moved by God; but this
motion is according to the plan of His providence, and not by necessity
of nature, as the motion of the heavenly body. Now not only is every
motion from God as from the First Mover, but all formal perfection is
from Him as from the First Act. And thus the act of the intellect or of
any created being whatsoever depends upon God in two ways: first,
inasmuch as it is from Him that it has the form whereby it acts;
secondly, inasmuch as it is moved by Him to act.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[1] Body Para. 2/3

Now every form bestowed on created things by God has power for a
determined act, which it can bring about in proportion to its own proper
endowment; and beyond which it is powerless, except by a superadded form,
as water can only heat when heated by the fire. And thus the human
understanding has a form, viz. intelligible light, which of itself is
sufficient for knowing certain intelligible things, viz. those we can
come to know through the senses. Higher intelligible things of the human
intellect cannot know, unless it be perfected by a stronger light, viz.
the light of faith or prophecy which is called the "light of grace,"
inasmuch as it is added to nature.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[1] Body Para. 3/3

Hence we must say that for the knowledge of any truth whatsoever man
needs Divine help, that the intellect may be moved by God to its act. But
he does not need a new light added to his natural light, in order to know
the truth in all things, but only in some that surpass his natural
knowledge. And yet at times God miraculously instructs some by His grace
in things that can be known by natural reason, even as He sometimes
brings about miraculously what nature can do.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[1] R.O. 1 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 1: Every truth by whomsoever spoken is from the Holy Ghost as
bestowing the natural light, and moving us to understand and speak the
truth, but not as dwelling in us by sanctifying grace, or as bestowing
any habitual gift superadded to nature. For this only takes place with
regard to certain truths that are known and spoken, and especially in
regard to such as pertain to faith, of which the Apostle speaks.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[1] R.O. 2 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 2: The material sun sheds its light outside us; but the
intelligible Sun, Who is God, shines within us. Hence the natural light
bestowed upon the soul is God's enlightenment, whereby we are enlightened
to see what pertains to natural knowledge; and for this there is required
no further knowledge, but only for such things as surpass natural
knowledge.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[1] R.O. 3 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 3: We always need God's help for every thought, inasmuch as He
moves the understanding to act; for actually to understand anything is to
think, as is clear from Augustine (De Trin. xiv, 7).


Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[2] Thes. Para. 1/1

Whether man can wish or do any good without grace?

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[2] Obj. 1 Para. 1/1

OBJ 1: It would seem that man can wish and do good without grace. For
that is in man's power, whereof he is master. Now man is master of his
acts, and especially of his willing, as stated above (Q[1], A[1]; Q[13],
A[6]). Hence man, of himself, can wish and do good without the help of
grace.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[2] Obj. 2 Para. 1/1

OBJ 2: Further, man has more power over what is according to his nature
than over what is beyond his nature. Now sin is against his nature, as
Damascene says (De Fide Orth. ii, 30); whereas deeds of virtue are
according to his nature, as stated above (Q[71], A[1]). Therefore since
man can sin of himself he can wish and do good.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[2] Obj. 3 Para. 1/1

OBJ 3: Further, the understanding's good is truth, as the Philosopher
says (Ethic. vi, 2). Now the intellect can of itself know truth, even as
every other thing can work its own operation of itself. Therefore, much
more can man, of himself, do and wish good.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[2] OTC Para. 1/1

On the contrary, The Apostle says (Rm. 9:16): "It is not of him that
willeth," namely, to will, "nor of him that runneth," namely to run, "but
of God that showeth mercy." And Augustine says (De Corrept. et Gratia ii)
that "without grace men do nothing good when they either think or wish or
love or act."

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[2] Body Para. 1/2

I answer that, Man's nature may be looked at in two ways: first, in its
integrity, as it was in our first parent before sin; secondly, as it is
corrupted in us after the sin of our first parent. Now in both states
human nature needs the help of God as First Mover, to do or wish any good
whatsoever, as stated above (A[1]). But in the state of integrity, as
regards the sufficiency of the operative power, man by his natural
endowments could wish and do the good proportionate to his nature, such
as the good of acquired virtue; but not surpassing good, as the good of
infused virtue. But in the state of corrupt nature, man falls short of
what he could do by his nature, so that he is unable to fulfil it by his
own natural powers. Yet because human nature is not altogether corrupted
by sin, so as to be shorn of every natural good, even in the state of
corrupted nature it can, by virtue of its natural endowments, work some
particular good, as to build dwellings, plant vineyards, and the like;
yet it cannot do all the good natural to it, so as to fall short in
nothing; just as a sick man can of himself make some movements, yet he
cannot be perfectly moved with the movements of one in health, unless by
the help of medicine he be cured.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[2] Body Para. 2/2

And thus in the state of perfect nature man needs a gratuitous strength
superadded to natural strength for one reason, viz. in order to do and
wish supernatural good; but for two reasons, in the state of corrupt
nature, viz. in order to be healed, and furthermore in order to carry out
works of supernatural virtue, which are meritorious. Beyond this, in both
states man needs the Divine help, that he may be moved to act well.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[2] R.O. 1 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 1: Man is master of his acts and of his willing or not
willing, because of his deliberate reason, which can be bent to one side
or another. And although he is master of his deliberating or not
deliberating, yet this can only be by a previous deliberation; and since
it cannot go on to infinity, we must come at length to this, that man's
free-will is moved by an extrinsic principle, which is above the human
mind, to wit by God, as the Philosopher proves in the chapter "On Good
Fortune" (Ethic. Eudem. vii). Hence the mind of man still unweakened is
not so much master of its act that it does not need to be moved by God;
and much more the free-will of man weakened by sin, whereby it is
hindered from good by the corruption of the nature.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[2] R.O. 2 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 2: To sin is nothing else than to fail in the good which
belongs to any being according to its nature. Now as every created thing
has its being from another, and, considered in itself, is nothing, so
does it need to be preserved by another in the good which pertains to its
nature. For it can of itself fail in good, even as of itself it can fall
into non-existence, unless it is upheld by God.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[2] R.O. 3 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 3: Man cannot even know truth without Divine help, as stated
above (A[1]). And yet human nature is more corrupt by sin in regard to
the desire for good, than in regard to the knowledge of truth.


Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[3] Thes. Para. 1/1

Whether by his own natural powers and without grace man can love God
above all things?

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[3] Obj. 1 Para. 1/1

OBJ 1: It would seem that without grace man cannot love God above all
things by his own natural powers. For to love God above all things is the
proper and principal act of charity. Now man cannot of himself possess
charity, since the "charity of God is poured forth in our hearts by the
Holy Ghost Who is given to us," as is said Rm. 5:5. Therefore man by his
natural powers alone cannot love God above all things.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[3] Obj. 2 Para. 1/1

OBJ 2: Further, no nature can rise above itself. But to love God above
all things is to tend above oneself. Therefore without the help of grace
no created nature can love God above itself.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[3] Obj. 3 Para. 1/1

OBJ 3: Further, to God, Who is the Highest Good, is due the best love,
which is that He be loved above all things. Now without grace man is not
capable of giving God the best love, which is His due; otherwise it would
be useless to add grace. Hence man, without grace and with his natural
powers alone, cannot love God above all things.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[3] OTC Para. 1/1

On the contrary, As some maintain, man was first made with only natural
endowments; and in this state it is manifest that he loved God to some
extent. But he did not love God equally with himself, or less than
himself, otherwise he would have sinned. Therefore he loved God above
himself. Therefore man, by his natural powers alone, can love God more
than himself and above all things.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[3] Body Para. 1/1

I answer that, As was said above (FP, Q[60], A[5]), where the various
opinions concerning the natural love of the angels were set forth, man in
a state of perfect nature, could by his natural power, do the good
natural to him without the addition of any gratuitous gift, though not
without the help of God moving him. Now to love God above all things is
natural to man and to every nature, not only rational but irrational, and
even to inanimate nature according to the manner of love which can belong
to each creature. And the reason of this is that it is natural to all to
seek and love things according as they are naturally fit (to be sought
and loved) since "all things act according as they are naturally fit" as
stated in Phys. ii, 8. Now it is manifest that the good of the part is
for the good of the whole; hence everything, by its natural appetite and
love, loves its own proper good on account of the common good of the
whole universe, which is God. Hence Dionysius says (Div. Nom. iv) that
"God leads everything to love of Himself." Hence in the state of perfect
nature man referred the love of himself and of all other things to the
love of God as to its end; and thus he loved God more than himself and
above all things. But in the state of corrupt nature man falls short of
this in the appetite of his rational will, which, unless it is cured by
God's grace, follows its private good, on account of the corruption of
nature. And hence we must say that in the state of perfect nature man did
not need the gift of grace added to his natural endowments, in order to
love God above all things naturally, although he needed God's help to
move him to it; but in the state of corrupt nature man needs, even for
this, the help of grace to heal his nature.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[3] R.O. 1 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 1: Charity loves God above all things in a higher way than
nature does. For nature loves God above all things inasmuch as He is the
beginning and the end of natural good; whereas charity loves Him, as He
is the object of beatitude, and inasmuch as man has a spiritual
fellowship with God. Moreover charity adds to natural love of God a
certain quickness and joy, in the same way that every habit of virtue
adds to the good act which is done merely by the natural reason of a man
who has not the habit of virtue.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[3] R.O. 2 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 2: When it is said that nature cannot rise above itself, we
must not understand this as if it could not be drawn to any object above
itself, for it is clear that our intellect by its natural knowledge can
know things above itself, as is shown in our natural knowledge of God.
But we are to understand that nature cannot rise to an act exceeding the
proportion of its strength. Now to love God above all things is not such
an act; for it is natural to every creature, as was said above.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[3] R.O. 3 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 3: Love is said to be best, both with respect to degree of
love, and with regard to the motive of loving, and the mode of love. And
thus the highest degree of love is that whereby charity loves God as the
giver of beatitude, as was said above.


Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[4] Thes. Para. 1/1

Whether man without grace and by his own natural powers can fulfil the
commandments of the Law?

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[4] Obj. 1 Para. 1/1

OBJ 1: It would seem that man without grace, and by his own natural
powers, can fulfil the commandments of the Law. For the Apostle says (Rm.
2:14) that "the Gentiles who have not the law, do by nature those things
that are of the Law." Now what a man does naturally he can do of himself
without grace. Hence a man can fulfil the commandments of the Law without
grace.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[4] Obj. 2 Para. 1/1

OBJ 2: Further, Jerome says (Expos. Cathol. Fide [*Symboli Explanatio ad
Damasum, among the supposititious works of St. Jerome: now ascribed to
Pelagius]) that "they are anathema who say God has laid impossibilities
upon man." Now what a man cannot fulfil by himself is impossible to him.
Therefore a man can fulfil all the commandments of himself.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[4] Obj. 3 Para. 1/1

OBJ 3: Further, of all the commandments of the Law, the greatest is
this, "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with thy whole heart" (Mt.
27:37). Now man with his natural endowments can fulfil this command by
loving God above all things, as stated above (A[3]). Therefore man can
fulfil all the commandments of the Law without grace.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[4] OTC Para. 1/1

On the contrary, Augustine says (De Haeres. lxxxviii) that it is part of
the Pelagian heresy that "they believe that without grace man can fulfil
all the Divine commandments."

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[4] Body Para. 1/1

I answer that, There are two ways of fulfilling the commandments of the
Law. The first regards the substance of the works, as when a man does
works of justice, fortitude, and of other virtues. And in this way man in
the state of perfect nature could fulfil all the commandments of the Law;
otherwise he would have been unable to sin in that state, since to sin is
nothing else than to transgress the Divine commandments. But in the state
of corrupted nature man cannot fulfil all the Divine commandments without
healing grace. Secondly, the commandments of the law can be fulfilled,
not merely as regards the substance of the act, but also as regards the
mode of acting, i.e. their being done out of charity. And in this way,
neither in the state of perfect nature, nor in the state of corrupt
nature can man fulfil the commandments of the law without grace. Hence,
Augustine (De Corrupt. et Grat. ii) having stated that "without grace men
can do no good whatever," adds: "Not only do they know by its light what
to do, but by its help they do lovingly what they know." Beyond this, in
both states they need the help of God's motion in order to fulfil the
commandments, as stated above (AA[2],3).

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[4] R.O. 1 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 1: As Augustine says (De Spir. et Lit. xxvii), "do not be
disturbed at his saying that they do by nature those things that are of
the Law; for the Spirit of grace works this, in order to restore in us
the image of God, after which we were naturally made."

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[4] R.O. 2 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 2: What we can do with the Divine assistance is not altogether
impossible to us; according to the Philosopher (Ethic. iii, 3): "What we
can do through our friends, we can do, in some sense, by ourselves."
Hence Jerome [*Symboli Explanatio ad Damasum, among the supposititious
works of St. Jerome: now ascribed to Pelagius] concedes that "our will is
in such a way free that we must confess we still require God's help."

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[4] R.O. 3 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 3: Man cannot, with his purely natural endowments, fulfil the
precept of the love of God, as stated above (A[3]).


Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[5] Thes. Para. 1/1

Whether man can merit everlasting life without grace?

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[5] Obj. 1 Para. 1/1

OBJ 1: It would seem that man can merit everlasting life without grace.
For Our Lord says (Mt. 19:17): "If thou wilt enter into life, keep the
commandments"; from which it would seem that to enter into everlasting
life rests with man's will. But what rests with our will, we can do of
ourselves. Hence it seems that man can merit everlasting life of himself.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[5] Obj. 2 Para. 1/1

OBJ 2: Further, eternal life is the wage of reward bestowed by God on
men, according to Mt. 5:12: "Your reward is very great in heaven." But
wage or reward is meted by God to everyone according to his works,
according to Ps. 61:12: "Thou wilt render to every man according to his
works." Hence, since man is master of his works, it seems that it is
within his power to reach everlasting life.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[5] Obj. 3 Para. 1/1

OBJ 3: Further, everlasting life is the last end of human life. Now
every natural thing by its natural endowments can attain its end. Much
more, therefore, may man attain to life everlasting by his natural
endowments, without grace.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[5] OTC Para. 1/1

On the contrary, The Apostle says (Rm. 6:23): "The grace of God is life
everlasting." And as a gloss says, this is said "that we may understand
that God, of His own mercy, leads us to everlasting life."

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[5] Body Para. 1/1

I answer that, Acts conducing to an end must be proportioned to the end.
But no act exceeds the proportion of its active principle; and hence we
see in natural things, that nothing can by its operation bring about an
effect which exceeds its active force, but only such as is proportionate
to its power. Now everlasting life is an end exceeding the proportion of
human nature, as is clear from what we have said above (Q[5], A[5]).
Hence man, by his natural endowments, cannot produce meritorious works
proportionate to everlasting life; and for this a higher force is
needed, viz. the force of grace. And thus without grace man cannot merit
everlasting life; yet he can perform works conducing to a good which is
natural to man, as "to toil in the fields, to drink, to eat, or to have
friends," and the like, as Augustine says in his third Reply to the
Pelagians [*Hypognosticon iii, among the spurious works of St. Augustine].

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[5] R.O. 1 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 1: Man, by his will, does works meritorious of everlasting
life; but as Augustine says, in the same book, for this it is necessary
that the will of man should be prepared with grace by God.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[5] R.O. 2 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 2: As the gloss upon Rm. 6:23, "The grace of God is life
everlasting," says, "It is certain that everlasting life is meter to good
works; but the works to which it is meted, belong to God's grace." And it
has been said (A[4]), that to fulfil the commandments of the Law, in
their due way, whereby their fulfilment may be meritorious, requires
grace.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[5] R.O. 3 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 3: This objection has to do with the natural end of man. Now
human nature, since it is nobler, can be raised by the help of grace to a
higher end, which lower natures can nowise reach; even as a man who can
recover his health by the help of medicines is better disposed to health
than one who can nowise recover it, as the Philosopher observes (De Coelo
ii, 12).


Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[6] Thes. Para. 1/1

Whether a man, by himself and without the external aid of grace, can
prepare himself for grace?

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[6] Obj. 1 Para. 1/1

OBJ 1: It would seem that man, by himself and without the external help
of grace, can prepare himself for grace. For nothing impossible is laid
upon man, as stated above (A[4], ad 1). But it is written (Zach. 1:3):
"Turn ye to Me . . . and I will turn to you." Now to prepare for grace is
nothing more than to turn to God. Therefore it seems that man of himself,
and without the external help of grace, can prepare himself for grace.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[6] Obj. 2 Para. 1/1

OBJ 2: Further, man prepares himself for grace by doing what is in him
to do, since if man does what is in him to do, God will not deny him
grace, for it is written (Mt. 7:11) that God gives His good Spirit "to
them that ask Him." But what is in our power is in us to do. Therefore it
seems to be in our power to prepare ourselves for grace.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[6] Obj. 3 Para. 1/1

OBJ 3: Further, if a man needs grace in order to prepare for grace, with
equal reason will he need grace to prepare himself for the first grace;
and thus to infinity, which is impossible. Hence it seems that we must
not go beyond what was said first, viz. that man, of himself and without
grace, can prepare himself for grace.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[6] Obj. 4 Para. 1/1

OBJ 4: Further, it is written (Prov. 16:1) that "it is the part of man
to prepare the soul." Now an action is said to be part of a man, when he
can do it by himself. Hence it seems that man by himself can prepare
himself for grace.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[6] OTC Para. 1/1

On the contrary, It is written (Jn. 6:44): "No man can come to Me except
the Father, Who hath sent Me, draw him." But if man could prepare
himself, he would not need to be drawn by another. Hence man cannot
prepare himself without the help of grace.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[6] Body Para. 1/1

I answer that, The preparation of the human will for good is twofold: the first, whereby it is prepared to operate rightly and to enjoy God;
and this preparation of the will cannot take place without the habitual
gift of grace, which is the principle of meritorious works, as stated
above (A[5]). There is a second way in which the human will may be taken
to be prepared for the gift of habitual grace itself. Now in order that
man prepare himself to receive this gift, it is not necessary to
presuppose any further habitual gift in the soul, otherwise we should go
on to infinity. But we must presuppose a gratuitous gift of God, Who
moves the soul inwardly or inspires the good wish. For in these two ways
do we need the Divine assistance, as stated above (AA[2],3). Now that we
need the help of God to move us, is manifest. For since every agent acts
for an end, every cause must direct is effect to its end, and hence since
the order of ends is according to the order of agents or movers, man must
be directed to the last end by the motion of the first mover, and to the
proximate end by the motion of any of the subordinate movers; as the
spirit of the soldier is bent towards seeking the victory by the motion
of the leader of the army - and towards following the standard of a
regiment by the motion of the standard-bearer. And thus since God is the
First Mover, simply, it is by His motion that everything seeks to be
likened to God in its own way. Hence Dionysius says (Div. Nom. iv) that
"God turns all to Himself." But He directs righteous men to Himself as to
a special end, which they seek, and to which they wish to cling,
according to Ps. 72:28, "it is good for Me to adhere to my God." And that
they are "turned" to God can only spring from God's having "turned" them.
Now to prepare oneself for grace is, as it were, to be turned to God;
just as, whoever has his eyes turned away from the light of the sun,
prepares himself to receive the sun's light, by turning his eyes towards
the sun. Hence it is clear that man cannot prepare himself to receive the
light of grace except by the gratuitous help of God moving him inwardly.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[6] R.O. 1 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 1: Man's turning to God is by free-will; and thus man is
bidden to turn himself to God. But free-will can only be turned to God,
when God turns it, according to Jer. 31:18: "Convert me and I shall be
converted, for Thou art the Lord, my God"; and Lam. 5:21: "Convert us, O
Lord, to Thee, and we shall be converted."

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[6] R.O. 2 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 2: Man can do nothing unless moved by God, according to Jn.
15:5: "Without Me, you can do nothing." Hence when a man is said to do
what is in him to do, this is said to be in his power according as he is
moved by God.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[6] R.O. 3 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 3: This objection regards habitual grace, for which some
preparation is required, since every form requires a disposition in that
which is to be its subject. But in order that man should be moved by God, no further motion is presupposed since God is the First Mover. Hence we
need not go to infinity.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[6] R.O. 4 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 4: It is the part of man to prepare his soul, since he does
this by his free-will. And yet he does not do this without the help of
God moving him, and drawing him to Himself, as was said above.


Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[7] Thes. Para. 1/1

Whether man can rise from sin without the help of grace?

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[7] Obj. 1 Para. 1/1

OBJ 1: It would seem that man can rise from sin without the help of
grace. For what is presupposed to grace, takes place without grace. But
to rise to sin is presupposed to the enlightenment of grace; since it is
written (Eph. 5:14): "Arise from the dead and Christ shall enlighten
thee." Therefore man can rise from sin without grace.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[7] Obj. 2 Para. 1/1

OBJ 2: Further, sin is opposed to virtue as illness to health, as stated
above (Q[71], A[1], ad 3). Now, man, by force of his nature, can rise
from illness to health, without the external help of medicine, since
there still remains in him the principle of life, from which the natural
operation proceeds. Hence it seems that, with equal reason, man may be
restored by himself, and return from the state of sin to the state of
justice without the help of external grace.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[7] Obj. 3 Para. 1/1

OBJ 3: Further, every natural thing can return by itself to the act
befitting its nature, as hot water returns by itself to its natural
coldness, and a stone cast upwards returns by itself to its natural
movement. Now a sin is an act against nature, as is clear from Damascene
(De Fide Orth. ii, 30). Hence it seems that man by himself can return
from sin to the state of justice.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[7] OTC Para. 1/1

On the contrary, The Apostle says (Gal. 2:21; Cf. Gal. 3:21): "For if
there had been a law given which could give life - then Christ died in
vain," i.e. to no purpose. Hence with equal reason, if man has a nature,
whereby he can he justified, "Christ died in vain," i.e. to no purpose.
But this cannot fittingly be said. Therefore by himself he cannot be
justified, i.e. he cannot return from a state of sin to a state of
justice.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[7] Body Para. 1/2

I answer that, Man by himself can no wise rise from sin without the help
of grace. For since sin is transient as to the act and abiding in its
guilt, as stated above (Q[87], A[6]), to rise from sin is not the same as
to cease the act of sin; but to rise from sin means that man has restored
to him what he lost by sinning. Now man incurs a triple loss by sinning,
as was clearly shown above (Q[85], A[1]; Q[86], A[1]; Q[87], A[1]), viz.
stain, corruption of natural good, and debt of punishment. He incurs a
stain, inasmuch as he forfeits the lustre of grace through the deformity
of sin. Natural good is corrupted, inasmuch as man's nature is
disordered by man's will not being subject to God's; and this order being
overthrown, the consequence is that the whole nature of sinful man
remains disordered. Lastly, there is the debt of punishment, inasmuch as
by sinning man deserves everlasting damnation.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[7] Body Para. 2/2

Now it is manifest that none of these three can be restored except by
God. For since the lustre of grace springs from the shedding of Divine
light, this lustre cannot be brought back, except God sheds His light
anew: hence a habitual gift is necessary, and this is the light of grace.
Likewise, the order of nature can only be restored, i.e. man's will can
only be subject to God when God draws man's will to Himself, as stated
above (A[6]). So, too, the guilt of eternal punishment can be remitted by
God alone, against Whom the offense was committed and Who is man's Judge.
And thus in order that man rise from sin there is required the help of
grace, both as regards a habitual gift, and as regards the internal
motion of God.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[7] R.O. 1 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 1: To man is bidden that which pertains to the act of
free-will, as this act is required in order that man should rise from
sin. Hence when it is said, "Arise, and Christ shall enlighten thee," we
are not to think that the complete rising from sin precedes the
enlightenment of grace; but that when man by his free-will, moved by God,
strives to rise from sin, he receives the light of justifying grace.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[7] R.O. 2 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 2: The natural reason is not the sufficient principle of the
health that is in man by justifying grace. This principle is grace which
is taken away by sin. Hence man cannot be restored by himself; but he
requires the light of grace to be poured upon him anew, as if the soul
were infused into a dead body for its resurrection.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[7] R.O. 3 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 3: When nature is perfect, it can be restored by itself to its
befitting and proportionate condition; but without exterior help it
cannot be restored to what surpasses its measure. And thus human nature
undone by reason of the act of sin, remains no longer perfect, but
corrupted, as stated above (Q[85]); nor can it be restored, by itself, to
its connatural good, much less to the supernatural good of justice.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[8] Thes. Para. 1/1

Whether man without grace can avoid sin?

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[8] Obj. 1 Para. 1/1

OBJ 1: It would seem that without grace man can avoid sin. Because "no
one sins in what he cannot avoid," as Augustine says (De Duab. Anim. x,
xi; De Libero Arbit. iii, 18). Hence if a man in mortal sin cannot avoid
sin, it would seem that in sinning he does not sin, which is impossible.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[8] Obj. 2 Para. 1/1

OBJ 2: Further, men are corrected that they may not sin. If therefore a
man in mortal sin cannot avoid sin, correction would seem to be given to
no purpose; which is absurd.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[8] Obj. 3 Para. 1/1

OBJ 3: Further, it is written (Ecclus. 15:18): "Before man is life and
death, good and evil; that which he shall choose shall be given him." But
by sinning no one ceases to be a man. Hence it is still in his power to
choose good or evil; and thus man can avoid sin without grace.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[8] OTC Para. 1/1

On the contrary, Augustine says (De Perfect Just. xxi): "Whoever denies
that we ought to say the prayer 'Lead us not into temptation' (and they
deny it who maintain that the help of God's grace is not necessary to man
for salvation, but that the gift of the law is enough for the human will)
ought without doubt to be removed beyond all hearing, and to be
anathematized by the tongues of all."

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[8] Body Para. 1/3

I answer that, We may speak of man in two ways: first, in the state of
perfect nature; secondly, in the state of corrupted nature. Now in the
state of perfect nature, man, without habitual grace, could avoid sinning
either mortally or venially; since to sin is nothing else than to stray
from what is according to our nature - and in the state of perfect nature
man could avoid this. Nevertheless he could not have done it without
God's help to uphold him in good, since if this had been withdrawn, even
his nature would have fallen back into nothingness.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[8] Body Para. 2/3

But in the state of corrupt nature man needs grace to heal his nature in
order that he may entirely abstain from sin. And in the present life this
healing is wrought in the mind - the carnal appetite being not yet
restored. Hence the Apostle (Rm. 7:25) says in the person of one who is
restored: "I myself, with the mind, serve the law of God, but with the
flesh, the law of sin." And in this state man can abstain from all mortal
sin, which takes its stand in his reason, as stated above (Q[74], A[5]);
but man cannot abstain from all venial sin on account of the corruption
of his lower appetite of sensuality. For man can, indeed, repress each of
its movements (and hence they are sinful and voluntary), but not all,
because whilst he is resisting one, another may arise, and also because
the reason is always alert to avoid these movements, as was said above
(Q[74], A[3], ad 2).

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[8] Body Para. 3/3

So, too, before man's reason, wherein is mortal sin, is restored by
justifying grace, he can avoid each mortal sin, and for a time, since it
is not necessary that he should be always actually sinning. But it cannot
be that he remains for a long time without mortal sin. Hence Gregory says
(Super Ezech. Hom. xi) that " a sin not at once taken away by repentance,
by its weight drags us down to other sins": and this because, as the
lower appetite ought to be subject to the reason, so should the reason be
subject to God, and should place in Him the end of its will. Now it is by
the end that all human acts ought to be regulated, even as it is by the
judgment of the reason that the movements of the lower appetite should be
regulated. And thus, even as inordinate movements of the sensitive
appetite cannot help occurring since the lower appetite is not subject to
reason, so likewise, since man's reason is not entirely subject to God,
the consequence is that many disorders occur in the reason. For when
man's heart is not so fixed on God as to be unwilling to be parted from
Him for the sake of finding any good or avoiding any evil, many things
happen for the achieving or avoiding of which a man strays from God and
breaks His commandments, and thus sins mortally: especially since, when
surprised, a man acts according to his preconceived end and his
pre-existing habits, as the Philosopher says (Ethic. iii); although with
premeditation of his reason a man may do something outside the order of
his preconceived end and the inclination of his habit. But because a man
cannot always have this premeditation, it cannot help occurring that he
acts in accordance with his will turned aside from God, unless, by grace,
he is quickly brought back to the due order.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[8] R.O. 1 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 1: Man can avoid each but every act of sin, except by grace,
as stated above. Nevertheless, since it is by his own shortcoming that he
does not prepare himself to have grace, the fact that he cannot avoid sin
without grace does not excuse him from sin.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[8] R.O. 2 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 2: Correction is useful "in order that out of the sorrow of
correction may spring the wish to be regenerate; if indeed he who is
corrected is a son of promise, in such sort that whilst the noise of
correction is outwardly resounding and punishing, God by hidden
inspirations is inwardly causing to will," as Augustine says (De Corr. et
Gratia vi). Correction is therefore necessary, from the fact that man's
will is required in order to abstain from sin; yet it is not sufficient
without God's help. Hence it is written (Eccles. 7:14): "Consider the
works of God that no man can correct whom He hath despised."

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[8] R.O. 3 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 3: As Augustine says (Hypognosticon iii [*Among the spurious
works of St. Augustine]), this saying is to be understood of man in the
state of perfect nature, when as yet he was not a slave of sin. Hence he
was able to sin and not to sin. Now, too, whatever a man wills, is given
to him; but his willing good, he has by God's assistance.


Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[9] Thes. Para. 1/1

Whether one who has already obtained grace, can, of himself and without
further help of grace, do good and avoid sin?

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[9] Obj. 1 Para. 1/1

OBJ 1: It would seem that whoever has already obtained grace, can by
himself and without further help of grace, do good and avoid sin. For a
thing is useless or imperfect, if it does not fulfil what it was given
for. Now grace is given to us that we may do good and keep from sin.
Hence if with grace man cannot do this, it seems that grace is either
useless or imperfect.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[9] Obj. 2 Para. 1/1

OBJ 2: Further, by grace the Holy Spirit dwells in us, according to 1
Cor. 3:16: "Know you not that you are the temple of God, and that the
Spirit of God dwelleth in you?" Now since the Spirit of God is
omnipotent, He is sufficient to ensure our doing good and to keep us from
sin. Hence a man who has obtained grace can do the above two things
without any further assistance of grace.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[9] Obj. 3 Para. 1/1

OBJ 3: Further, if a man who has obtained grace needs further aid of
grace in order to live righteously and to keep free from sin, with equal
reason, will he need yet another grace, even though he has obtained this
first help of grace. Therefore we must go on to infinity; which is
impossible. Hence whoever is in grace needs no further help of grace in
order to do righteously and to keep free from sin.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[9] OTC Para. 1/1

On the contrary, Augustine says (De Natura et Gratia xxvi) that "as the
eye of the body though most healthy cannot see unless it is helped by the
brightness of light, so, neither can a man, even if he is most righteous,
live righteously unless he be helped by the eternal light of justice."
But justification is by grace, according to Rm. 3:24: "Being justified
freely by His grace." Hence even a man who already possesses grace needs
a further assistance of grace in order to live righteously.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[9] Body Para. 1/2

I answer that, As stated above (A[5]), in order to live righteously a
man needs a twofold help of God - first, a habitual gift whereby
corrupted human nature is healed, and after being healed is lifted up so
as to work deeds meritoriously of everlasting life, which exceed the
capability of nature. Secondly, man needs the help of grace in order to
be moved by God to act.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[9] Body Para. 2/2

Now with regard to the first kind of help, man does not need a further
help of grace, e.g. a further infused habit. Yet he needs the help of
grace in another way, i.e. in order to be moved by God to act
righteously, and this for two reasons: first, for the general reason that
no created thing can put forth any act, unless by virtue of the Divine
motion. Secondly, for this special reason - the condition of the state of
human nature. For although healed by grace as to the mind, yet it remains
corrupted and poisoned in the flesh, whereby it serves "the law of sin,"
Rm. 7:25. In the intellect, too, there seems the darkness of ignorance,
whereby, as is written (Rm. 8:26): "We know not what we should pray for
as we ought"; since on account of the various turns of circumstances, and
because we do not know ourselves perfectly, we cannot fully know what is
for our good, according to Wis. 9:14: "For the thoughts of mortal men are
fearful and our counsels uncertain." Hence we must be guided and guarded by God, Who knows and can do all things. For which reason also it is
becoming in those who have been born again as sons of God, to say: "Lead
us not into temptation," and "Thy Will be done on earth as it is in
heaven," and whatever else is contained in the Lord's Prayer pertaining
to this.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[9] R.O. 1 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 1: The gift of habitual grace is not therefore given to us
that we may no longer need the Divine help; for every creature needs to
be preserved in the good received from Him. Hence if after having
received grace man still needs the Divine help, it cannot be concluded
that grace is given to no purpose, or that it is imperfect, since man
will need the Divine help even in the state of glory, when grace shall
be fully perfected. But here grace is to some extent imperfect, inasmuch
as it does not completely heal man, as stated above.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[9] R.O. 2 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 2: The operation of the Holy Ghost, which moves and protects,
is not circumscribed by the effect of habitual grace which it causes in
us; but beyond this effect He, together with the Father and the Son,
moves and protects us.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[9] R.O. 3 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 3: This argument merely proves that man needs no further
habitual grace.


Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[10] Thes. Para. 1/1

Whether man possessed of grace needs the help of grace in order to
persevere?

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[10] Obj. 1 Para. 1/1

OBJ 1: It would seem that man possessed of grace needs no help to
persevere. For perseverance is something less than virtue, even as
continence is, as is clear from the Philosopher (Ethic. vii, 7,9). Now
since man is justified by grace, he needs no further help of grace in
order to have the virtues. Much less, therefore, does he need the help of
grace to have perseverance.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[10] Obj. 2 Para. 1/1

OBJ 2: Further, all the virtues are infused at once. But perseverance is
put down as a virtue. Hence it seems that, together with grace,
perseverance is given to the other infused virtues.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[10] Obj. 3 Para. 1/1

OBJ 3: Further, as the Apostle says (Rm. 5:20) more was restored to man
by Christ's gift, than he had lost by Adam's sin. But Adam received what
enabled him to persevere; and thus man does not need grace in order to
persevere.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[10] OTC Para. 1/1

On the contrary, Augustine says (De Persev. ii): "Why is perseverance besought of God, if it is not bestowed by God? For is it not a mocking
request to seek what we know He does not give, and what is in our power
without His giving it?" Now perseverance is besought by even those who
are hallowed by grace; and this is seen, when we say "Hallowed be Thy
name," which Augustine confirms by the words of Cyprian (De Correp. et
Grat. xii). Hence man, even when possessed of grace, needs perseverance
to be given to him by God.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[10] Body Para. 1/1

I answer that, Perseverance is taken in three ways. First, to signify a
habit of the mind whereby a man stands steadfastly, lest he be moved by
the assault of sadness from what is virtuous. And thus perseverance is to
sadness as continence is to concupiscence and pleasure, as the
Philosopher says (Ethic. vii, 7). Secondly, perseverance may be called a
habit, whereby a man has the purpose of persevering in good unto the end.
And in both these ways perseverance is infused together with grace, even
as continence and the other virtues are. Thirdly, perseverance is called
the abiding in good to the end of life. And in order to have this
perseverance man does not, indeed, need another habitual grace, but he
needs the Divine assistance guiding and guarding him against the attacks
of the passions, as appears from the preceding article. And hence after
anyone has been justified by grace, he still needs to beseech God for the
aforesaid gift of perseverance, that he may be kept from evil till the
end of his life. For to many grace is given to whom perseverance in grace
is not given.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[10] R.O. 1 Para. 1/2

Reply OBJ 1: This objection regards the first mode of perseverance, as
the second objection regards the second.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[10] R.O. 1 Para. 2/2

Hence the solution of the second objection is clear.

Aquin.: SMT FS Q[109] A[10] R.O. 3 Para. 1/1

Reply OBJ 3: As Augustine says (De Natura et Gratia xliii) [*Cf. De
Correp. et Grat. xii]: "in the original state man received a gift whereby
he could persevere, but to persevere was not given him. But now, by the
grace of Christ, many receive both the gift of grace whereby they may
persevere, and the further gift of persevering," and thus Christ's gift
is greater than Adam's fault. Nevertheless it was easier for man to
persevere, with the gift of grace in the state of innocence in which the
flesh was not rebellious against the spirit, than it is now. For the
restoration by Christ's grace, although it is already begun in the mind,
is not yet completed in the flesh, as it will be in heaven, where man
will not merely be able to persevere but will be unable to sin.





Previous - Next

Table of Contents | Words: Alphabetical - Frequency - Inverse - Length - Statistics | Help | IntraText Library

Best viewed with any browser at 800x600 or 768x1024 on Tablet PC
IntraText® (V89) - Some rights reserved by Èulogos SpA - 1996-2007. Content in this page is licensed under a Creative Commons License