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    World Religion & Speculative Theology - Thread: Grace

    1. #1
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      Grace

      In the thread Salvation some questions were raised about "grace"

      One is about uncreated and created grace.

      Other questions were also raised.

      So, here is a new thread to discuss those specific issues. They do relate to Salvation but they also are a subject in themselves.
      Saint Jude, author of the new testament letter.

      He is the patron of impossible causes because the scriptural Letter of St. Jude, which he authored, urges Christians to persevere in difficult times.

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      The definition of grace
      The greatness of the gift of grace may be judged from the Biblical declarations of the effect of justification. Justification is a passage from the state of sin to the state of grace; from the old to the new man; from the mere flesh to the life of the spirit; from injustice to justice; from condemnation to liberation; from slavery to freedom; from sordidness to purity; from darkness to light; from death to life. The soul of the just man reflects the very light of the Godhead; it shines with a radiance like that of Christ Himself in His Transfiguration on the mountain.

      Justification involves a negative effect and a positive one; and the two always go together: the remission of sin, and the infusion of grace.

      Grace is favour or good-will. God’s favour or goodness to us, is God Himself, as all things in God are God. That is Uncreated Grace – which some say was forgotten in the controversies over grace after Trent.

      Sanctifying grace. Sanctifying Grace is a supernatural gift of God by which the soul is made pleasing to Him. In Latin it is called gratia gratum faciens: grace making one pleasing – pleasing to God, that is. It removes all stain of serious sin; it gives the soul a new and higher life and prepares the soul for that union with God destined for it in the blessedness of Heaven. It is called Sanctifying Grace, because it sanctifies, makes holy, with the Holiness of God Himself. It is a supernatural gift, because it is something to which no creature as such can ever have any natural right or claim, or attain by its own powers. It is called Habitual Grace, because it dwells and endures in the soul as a habitual, i.e., permanent and constant, quality. It is also called Justifying Grace because by it the sinner is “justified”, i.e., made just or righteous.

      Sanctifying Grace, a higher life, a participation in the divinity. The soul of man gives him a three-fold life. It enables him to grow, mature and reproduce, like a plant (vegetative life); to feel and perceive with the five senses, and move and follow instincts, like animals (sensitive life); and to think, reason, understand, contemplate, love and choose freely (intellectual life). But there is still a higher life, a divine life, a life which, by a true and real change, raises man above the natural excellence of the most exalted creatures, and sets him, so to speak, on a level with God Himself; a life which gives us a share in what is special to God Himself, a share in the knowledge God has of His own perfections and in the happiness He derives therefrom. This life is given to us by Sanctifying Grace. The state of grace is not merely the absence of mortal sin; it is a positive acquisition and elevation. “Therefore, if any one is in Christ”, says St Paul, “he is a new creation” (2 Cor 5:17). Scripture uses three participles: re-created, re-born, renewed. St Peter says the Father “has granted to us His precious and very great promises, that through these you may … become partakers of the divine nature.” (2 Pet 1:4). So Sanctifying Grace is also called Divine or Divinising Grace. Some of the Fathers speak of man’s divinisation or deification—as St John of the Cross uses the phrase, “We become God by participation”—which must be understood rightly of course! St John the Apostle says, “we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is” (1 Jn 3:2), and the Church prays at the Offertory of the Mass that “we may be made sharers in the Divinity of Him who deigned to participate in our humanity.”

      Sanctifying Grace makes us children of God. A rational creature as such is not a child of God but a servant of God. Through Grace, God adopts us as His sons; and so brothers of Christ. It makes each of us an alter Christus, another Christ. We often use that phrase to speak of the effect of ordination, but in the early Fathers it refers to any Christian.

      Sanctifying Grace enthrones the Holy Trinity in our soul. We speak of the Divine Indwelling. The change in the soul caused by Grace is wrought by all Three Divine Persons of the Blessed Trinity, but, being a work of Divine Love, it is ascribed to the Holy Spirit. His presence is incompatible with serious sin, “for”, as the Church prays in the Liturgy, “He is Himself the remission of all sins”—that phrase is in both the old and new Roman Missal.{{1}} The Holy Spirit is the Divine Artist who makes our soul like the soul of Jesus. Making us other Christs, the Holy Spirit takes up His dwelling in our body and soul: “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you?” (1 Cor 6:19). The Father and the Son are with the Holy Spirit in this indwelling: “If anyone loves me”, says Christ, “he will keep My word, and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make our home with him.” (Jn 14:23)

      Sanctifying Grace caused in us by God through the humanity of Christ. God is the principal cause of Grace; Christ as Man is the instrumental cause. His humanity is the instrument of the divinity. He is grace’s transmitter. According to St Thomas,{{2}} the entire humanity of Christ co-operates in the production of Grace. The humanity of Christ is joined to God in inseparable union, and is always used by Him in the production of Sanctifying Grace. – God may or may not employ a Sacrament as a means. He often gives Sanctifying Grace outside the Sacraments: “God has bound salvation to the sacrament of Baptism, but He Himself is not bound by His own sacraments.” (CCC 1257. Cf. St Thomas, Summa Theol., III, q. 64, a. 7: “God did not bind His power to the Sacraments, so as to be unable to bestow the sacramental effect without conferring the Sacrament”.)

      With Sanctifying Grace we receive virtues and gifts. These are the necessary concomitants (accompaniments) of grace. They are not grace but always accompany it:
      • The divine virtues. With Grace we receive the three Divine Virtues of Faith, Hope and Charity: we believe in God because of His truthfulness; we hope in God because of His power and willingness to help us; we love God because of His own goodness and love.
      • The moral virtues. The Moral Virtues are all those other virtues which are necessary for a good Christian life, which may be grouped under the four headings: Prudence, Justice, Temperance and Fortitude. (cf. Wis 8:7)
      • The gifts of the Holy Spirit. Just as sanctifying grace makes our souls to be like that of Jesus, the virtues and gifts enable us to act like Jesus. A Christian virtue is a power of acting in a Christ-like way.

      (source)
      Last edited by MoreCoffee; 06-25-2018 at 02:36 PM.
      Saint Jude, author of the new testament letter.

      He is the patron of impossible causes because the scriptural Letter of St. Jude, which he authored, urges Christians to persevere in difficult times.

      Hidden Content

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      I’m in the Orthodox camp where grace is more than unmerited favor but Christ Himself in the form of God’s energies.

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      Quote Originally Posted by MoreCoffee View Post
      The definition of grace
      The greatness of the gift of grace may be judged from the Biblical declarations of the effect of justification. Justification is a passage from the state of sin to the state of grace; from the old to the new man; from the mere flesh to the life of the spirit; from injustice to justice; from condemnation to liberation; from slavery to freedom; from sordidness to purity; from darkness to light; from death to life. The soul of the just man reflects the very light of the Godhead; it shines with a radiance like that of Christ Himself in His Transfiguration on the mountain.

      Justification involves a negative effect and a positive one; and the two always go together: the remission of sin, and the infusion of grace.

      Grace is favour or good-will. God’s favour or goodness to us, is God Himself, as all things in God are God. That is Uncreated Grace – which some say was forgotten in the controversies over grace after Trent.

      Sanctifying grace. Sanctifying Grace is a supernatural gift of God by which the soul is made pleasing to Him. In Latin it is called gratia gratum faciens: grace making one pleasing – pleasing to God, that is. It removes all stain of serious sin; it gives the soul a new and higher life and prepares the soul for that union with God destined for it in the blessedness of Heaven. It is called Sanctifying Grace, because it sanctifies, makes holy, with the Holiness of God Himself. It is a supernatural gift, because it is something to which no creature as such can ever have any natural right or claim, or attain by its own powers. It is called Habitual Grace, because it dwells and endures in the soul as a habitual, i.e., permanent and constant, quality. It is also called Justifying Grace because by it the sinner is “justified”, i.e., made just or righteous.

      Sanctifying Grace, a higher life, a participation in the divinity. The soul of man gives him a three-fold life. It enables him to grow, mature and reproduce, like a plant (vegetative life); to feel and perceive with the five senses, and move and follow instincts, like animals (sensitive life); and to think, reason, understand, contemplate, love and choose freely (intellectual life). But there is still a higher life, a divine life, a life which, by a true and real change, raises man above the natural excellence of the most exalted creatures, and sets him, so to speak, on a level with God Himself; a life which gives us a share in what is special to God Himself, a share in the knowledge God has of His own perfections and in the happiness He derives therefrom. This life is given to us by Sanctifying Grace. The state of grace is not merely the absence of mortal sin; it is a positive acquisition and elevation. “Therefore, if any one is in Christ”, says St Paul, “he is a new creation” (2 Cor 5:17). Scripture uses three participles: re-created, re-born, renewed. St Peter says the Father “has granted to us His precious and very great promises, that through these you may … become partakers of the divine nature.” (2 Pet 1:4). So Sanctifying Grace is also called Divine or Divinising Grace. Some of the Fathers speak of man’s divinisation or deification—as St John of the Cross uses the phrase, “We become God by participation”—which must be understood rightly of course! St John the Apostle says, “we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is” (1 Jn 3:2), and the Church prays at the Offertory of the Mass that “we may be made sharers in the Divinity of Him who deigned to participate in our humanity.”

      Sanctifying Grace makes us children of God. A rational creature as such is not a child of God but a servant of God. Through Grace, God adopts us as His sons; and so brothers of Christ. It makes each of us an alter Christus, another Christ. We often use that phrase to speak of the effect of ordination, but in the early Fathers it refers to any Christian.

      Sanctifying Grace enthrones the Holy Trinity in our soul. We speak of the Divine Indwelling. The change in the soul caused by Grace is wrought by all Three Divine Persons of the Blessed Trinity, but, being a work of Divine Love, it is ascribed to the Holy Spirit. His presence is incompatible with serious sin, “for”, as the Church prays in the Liturgy, “He is Himself the remission of all sins”—that phrase is in both the old and new Roman Missal.{{1}} The Holy Spirit is the Divine Artist who makes our soul like the soul of Jesus. Making us other Christs, the Holy Spirit takes up His dwelling in our body and soul: “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you?” (1 Cor 6:19). The Father and the Son are with the Holy Spirit in this indwelling: “If anyone loves me”, says Christ, “he will keep My word, and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make our home with him.” (Jn 14:23)

      Sanctifying Grace caused in us by God through the humanity of Christ. God is the principal cause of Grace; Christ as Man is the instrumental cause. His humanity is the instrument of the divinity. He is grace’s transmitter. According to St Thomas,{{2}} the entire humanity of Christ co-operates in the production of Grace. The humanity of Christ is joined to God in inseparable union, and is always used by Him in the production of Sanctifying Grace. – God may or may not employ a Sacrament as a means. He often gives Sanctifying Grace outside the Sacraments: “God has bound salvation to the sacrament of Baptism, but He Himself is not bound by His own sacraments.” (CCC 1257. Cf. St Thomas, Summa Theol., III, q. 64, a. 7: “God did not bind His power to the Sacraments, so as to be unable to bestow the sacramental effect without conferring the Sacrament”.)

      With Sanctifying Grace we receive virtues and gifts. These are the necessary concomitants (accompaniments) of grace. They are not grace but always accompany it:
      • The divine virtues. With Grace we receive the three Divine Virtues of Faith, Hope and Charity: we believe in God because of His truthfulness; we hope in God because of His power and willingness to help us; we love God because of His own goodness and love.
      • The moral virtues. The Moral Virtues are all those other virtues which are necessary for a good Christian life, which may be grouped under the four headings: Prudence, Justice, Temperance and Fortitude. (cf. Wis 8:7)
      • The gifts of the Holy Spirit. Just as sanctifying grace makes our souls to be like that of Jesus, the virtues and gifts enable us to act like Jesus. A Christian virtue is a power of acting in a Christ-like way.

      (source)
      Here is the reply that launched this thread:
      _____________________________________________

      MC, does this make any sense at all to you?

      The Catholic Dictionary states:

      there are three forms of uncreated grace:
      THEN
      all three are created graces
      But the gift conferred on a creature is uncreated...

      The reason given is that it is all a matter of how we are considering them???

      It is a matter of OUR psycho-epistemology??

      And THEN at the end:

      grace escapes our experience
      and cannot be known except by faith.


      I cannot find any coherence in any of this at all...
      __________________________________________________ ______

      So what is the difference in Latin teachings between created and Uncreated graces...?

      And how is Uncreated Grace transformed into created grace...?

      Or is it?

      Is the writer of this piece really saying that created and uncreated grace is simply a matter of human perspective, as it seem to say? Because it does seem to say that both are the same grace seen from two perspectives, one human and one Divine... It then throws in that the gift is uncreated... And then that we cannot know it, except by faith, whatever that now means...

      Can you make sense of this?

      Arsenios

      PS - Thank-you for starting this thread - Hopefully it may bear some fruit...

      Here is what you had posted to which I replied:

      Quote Originally Posted by MoreCoffee
      __________________________________________________ ____
      Quote Originally Posted by MC
      First from CatholicCulture
      [INDENT][I]Catholic Dictionary
      Term
      UNCREATED GRACE

      Definition
      God himself, insofar as in his love has predetermined gifts of grace.
      there are three forms of uncreated grace:
      the hypostatic union, the divine indwelling, and the beatific vision.

      In the first of these, God has communicated himself
      in the Incarnation of Christ's humanity (the grace of union)
      so intimately that Jesus of Nazareth is a divine person.

      In the second and third communications,
      the souls of the justified on earth and of the glorified in heaven
      are elevated to a share in God's own life.

      all three are created graces, considered as acts,
      since they all had a beginning in time.

      But the gift that is conferred on a creature in these acts is uncreated.
      Last edited by Arsenios; 06-26-2018 at 09:37 AM.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Arsenios View Post
      Here is the reply that launched this thread:
      _____________________________________________

      MC, does this make any sense at all to you?

      The Catholic Dictionary states:

      there are three forms of uncreated grace:
      THEN
      all three are created graces
      But the gift conferred on a creature is uncreated...

      The reason given is that it is all a matter of how we are considering them???

      It is a matter of OUR psycho-epistemology??

      And THEN at the end:

      grace escapes our experience
      and cannot be known except by faith.


      I cannot find any coherence in any of this at all...
      __________________________________________________ ______

      So what is the difference in Latin teachings between created and Uncreated graces...?

      And how is Uncreated Grace transformed into created grace...?

      Or is it?

      Is the writer of this piece really saying that created and uncreated grace is simply a matter of human perspective, as it seem to say? Because it does seem to say that both are the same grace seen from two perspectives, one human and one Divine... It then throws in that the gift is uncreated... And then that we cannot know it, except by faith, whatever that now means...

      Can you make sense of this?

      Arsenios

      PS - Thank-you for starting this thread - Hopefully it may bear some fruit...

      Here is what you had posted to which I replied:

      Quote Originally Posted by MoreCoffee
      __________________________________________________ ____
      I am beginning to think that the definition from the Catholic Culture web site is not helpful to you so let's bypass it. It is just a definition not an explanation, it seems, that is helpful to you.
      Saint Jude, author of the new testament letter.

      He is the patron of impossible causes because the scriptural Letter of St. Jude, which he authored, urges Christians to persevere in difficult times.

      Hidden Content

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      I am really confused about this uncreated grace, created grace thing. I am happy to admit I have no idea what your talking about or what the difference is. I looked it up in the encyclopedia and found this definition

      "Created grace is any grace that results from God communicating Himself beyond nature's demands, such as the beatific vision and all supernatural creatures positively leading to it. It may be actual or habitual, external or internal, medicinal or elevating, or anything else, so long as it is a creature positively undue to the person it enhances. Since the reality signified by the term grace is found properly both in God and in created things given to creatures beyond their due, the term grace applies truly to some created gifts of the supernatural order. It is therefore some gratuitous gift of God, distinct from God Himself, positively leading to the beatific vision of God.

      God Himself, given to a creature beyond any of its demands, is uncreated grace. Examples are primarily: the Blessed Trinity indwelling in the just as distinct from created gifts, the Son of God given in the Incarnation, the Holy Spirit sent men by the Father and the Son, the love of God for men that is God Himself beyond the demands of nature, and predestination, or God's decree to glorify those who shall be saved. This concept of grace is commonly admitted by theologians; for every supernatural gift is rightly called grace, and preeminent among these is God Himself."

      https://www.encyclopedia.com/religio...-and-uncreated

      Isn't most of our experiences "created grace" by this definition?
      Last edited by jsimms435; 06-26-2018 at 10:19 AM.

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      Continuing your article:Theological points on grace {{3}}

      Quote Originally Posted by article
      Sanctifying Grace is a created reality.

      Some, such as Peter Lombard (in the Sentences, written 1155-57), held that Grace is the Holy Spirit. This opinion has long been abandoned; St Thomas comments on it to reject it. Uncreated Grace is God Himself, is God’s benevolence toward us; created grace is something distinct. So, as Trent says, it can be increased, and received within us, each according to his own measure, which the Holy Spirit distributes to everyone as He wills.

      Sanctifying Grace is an interior reality.

      This is a doctrine opposed to Luther and his followers. Scripture speaks with terms such as seal, gift, seed, charity infused. The Roman Catechism of 1566 expresses it: “Grace is not only that by which the remission of sin occurs, but a divine quality inhering in the soul”.

      Sanctifying Grace is a permanent reality.

      Actual Grace is a transient reality but we are speaking of Sanctifying Grace. One of the errors of Baius (Michael de Bay) condemned by Pope Pius V in 1567 was to say that sanctifying grace “consists formally in obedience to the commandments … and not rather in a grace infused into the soul through which man is adopted as a son of God and interiorly renewed”.{{4}} So, for example, we speak of keeping the Baptismal robe unstained until Judgement: because of its enduring quality. Another reason for upholding this enduring quality is that infants are baptized when manifestly they, as yet, receive no grace to do good works. If birth confers a nature and life, then re-birth must similarly communicate something continuous and stable – a new principle of supernatural life.

      Sanctifying Grace is an ontological reality.

      We add this to distinguish it again from actual grace or from human actions – since some have said that grace is the moral quality of good acts pleasing to God and conducive to eternal life. If infants receive something from Baptism, then it is not transient, and it is not their morally good actions – of which they are incapable when below the age of reason. Again, to speak, as Trent does, of grace being increased or lost or re-acquired, means it is an ontological reality, not merely a mental or moral concept. The Bible speaks of it as a seed, as light, as water welling up.
      This is all about a category of creation called "sanctifying grace"???

      Monsignor Antonio Piolanti (1910-2001) teaches “it is a doctrine theologically certain that Grace is a created, internal, permanent and ontological reality.” (p. 533)
      Monsignor Piolanti would seem to agree...

      Arsenios
      Last edited by Arsenios; 06-26-2018 at 11:02 AM.

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      Quote Originally Posted by MoreCoffee View Post
      I am beginning to think that the definition from the Catholic Culture web site is not helpful to you so let's bypass it. It is just a definition not an explanation, it seems, that is helpful to you.
      I live in a profound simplicity, my Brother...

      Definitions are simple tools...

      The definition given is not coherent...

      It is indeed self-contradictory...

      We can move on...

      Arsenios

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      Quote Originally Posted by jsimms435 View Post
      I am really confused about this uncreated grace, created grace thing. I am happy to admit I have no idea what your talking about or what the difference is. I looked it up in the encyclopedia and found this definition

      "Created grace is any grace that results from God communicating Himself beyond nature's demands, such as the beatific vision and all supernatural creatures positively leading to it. It may be actual or habitual, external or internal, medicinal or elevating, or anything else, so long as it is a creature positively undue to the person it enhances. Since the reality signified by the term grace is found properly both in God and in created things given to creatures beyond their due, the term grace applies truly to some created gifts of the supernatural order. It is therefore some gratuitous gift of God, distinct from God Himself, positively leading to the beatific vision of God.

      God Himself, given to a creature beyond any of its demands, is uncreated grace. Examples are primarily: the Blessed Trinity indwelling in the just as distinct from created gifts, the Son of God given in the Incarnation, the Holy Spirit sent men by the Father and the Son, the love of God for men that is God Himself beyond the demands of nature, and predestination, or God's decree to glorify those who shall be saved. This concept of grace is commonly admitted by theologians; for every supernatural gift is rightly called grace, and preeminent among these is God Himself."

      https://www.encyclopedia.com/religio...-and-uncreated

      Isn't most of our experiences "created grace" by this definition?
      Uncreated Grace IS God Himself, but NOT God's Essence...
      Otherwise we would BE God Himself if we received it...

      Created Grace is, I should think, God's Providence...
      The Helps God affords to us to direct us to Him...

      Psa 82
      God standeth in the congregation of the mighty; he judgeth among the gods.
      How long will ye judge unjustly, and accept the persons of the wicked? Selah.
      Defend the poor and fatherless: do justice to the afflicted and needy.
      Deliver the poor and needy: rid them out of the hand of the wicked.
      They know not, neither will they understand; they walk on in darkness: all the foundations of the earth are out of course.
      I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High.
      But ye shall die like men, and fall like one of the princes.
      Arise, O God, judge the earth: for thou shalt inherit all nations.


      Does anyone know WHEN this happened?

      Arsenios

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      Quote Originally Posted by Arsenios View Post
      Continuing your article:Theological points on grace {{3}}



      This is all about a category of creation called "sanctifying grace"???



      Monsignor Piolanti would seem to agree...

      Arsenios
      I think it will take some time and some effort to properly digest the article, it is for the clergy and likely assumes philosophical studies that I am not so sure I have undertaken. I shall read the rest of the article with care. You may want to do the same. I may write to my bishop for clarifications if I need them.

      PS: The concept of uncreated grace does not appear to be obscure. It may be summarised simply as "God's giving of himself" and the incarnation and all that it encompasses is (at the very least) part of that gift. Theosis is implied in the gift of incarnation. I am not sure that this topic is present in Protestant theology.
      Saint Jude, author of the new testament letter.

      He is the patron of impossible causes because the scriptural Letter of St. Jude, which he authored, urges Christians to persevere in difficult times.

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