Final EssaysJoe PadykulaSister SundermanTH 100 BDecember 14, 2000GraceIn order to completely understand the theology of graceyou have to take a look at Augustine, Aquinas, Luther,Rahner, Segundo, and Boff, and how they understood whatgrace was.
Their theories on grace have some valid pointsand yet they also have some invalid points.Augustine took a personal approach to grace and hebelieved in the massa damnata, which basically means that onthe whole people are damned. He said before the originalsin, you had a choice to be good or evil. Also, Augustinesaid that there is a double predestination, which means onlysome people are chosen before they are born if they aregoing to go to heaven. I don’t agree with this because itis basically saying that there is no salvation for allpeople.
Aquinas thought that grace was added to nature and itelevates nature. He wrote the Summa, which demonstrates thebeatific vision. The beatific vision is when the mind isunified to God. Aquinas’ theology is dualistic whichdisplays natural and supernatural as separate entities. Idon’t believe in his beatific vision because I believe thatGod allows us to make our own choices out of free will soour mind cannot be unified with Him. Unless I am wrong,this is saying God knows what is going to happen before ithappens. If this is the case why do we have suffering;because God gave us free will.Luther viewed grace through his own view of himself asa sinner.
He was so obsessed that he confessed his sinsseven times a day. He said that grace is a favor of God andit heals a person’s sinfulness. He said that Jesus’ wordwas a vehicle of grace and that grace cannot be merited. Ithink his views on grace are not very good only because heviews God as an active member and humans as a passive one. In order to be truly graced I believe that both parties needto be active and involved.Rahner believes that grace is intrinsic to nature andhe also believes in Anonymous Christianity. This theory isthat every person on this Earth is a Christian even if youdo not know it. I don’t agree with this theory because,once again God gives everyone free will and this allowspeople to believe the way they want to.
Boff says grace is a relationship with the trinity. Iagree with this because it consists of showing love anddevotion to all three persons of our one God. He also saidthat liberation is the key to grace.
I some what agree withthis because it is showing God that you are showing yourtotal love for Him, but you must also show love towardsothers because loving your neighbors is also important.Segundo was a Jesuit priest from Uruguay. He was aliberationist who said that the meaning of grace was to loveand you would be free and to be free was to love.
I likethe idea behind this concept because it suggests that if youdevote yourself to God he will take care of you and allowyou to have your freedoms. This does not always happen yetit is a good theory.I think in order to be truly graced you have to loveeveryone and expect nothing in return. The reason I saythis is because you should know that God will take care ofyou no matter what.
If your neighbors are good people theywill show you love and respect so you need not worry aboutit. I also feel that you need to show love towards thetrinity and be faithful to your faith no matter what it is. If you do these things I believe that you will be graced.