CatholicPlanet.Net discussion group  

Go Back   CatholicPlanet.Net discussion group > Catholic Continuing Education > Catholic Theology Q & A
FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
  #1  
Old 17th January 2013, 11:33 PM
Ron Conte Ron Conte is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 12,628
Default What is grace?

The human person has a number of natural abilities, such as the use of the body, and the use of will and intellect. These abilities are of human nature, which is created by God. But grace is supernatural; it is a gift bestowed on man by God beyond what human nature can accomplish. The power of grace surpasses the power of every created thing. Grace is an act of God, directly affecting the soul, enabling the human person to be good and to do good. The grace of God changes the human person to be and to do more than what human nature allows. Grace moves and enables the will, and enlightens and guides the intellect, so that the person may choose, carry out, and complete good and holy acts of every kind. Grace directs the soul and its acts continually toward God.

Grace is not necessary for each and every morally permissible act. But grace is necessary to live a moral life because the human person has free will and reason. The natural use of free will and reason is inherently ordered toward a search for truth and goodness, not only the natural limited truths and goods of temporal life (e.g. food, other necessities, the affection of others), but even more so the higher goods, such as moral truth, true spiritual love, and the single highest good: God.

Fallen human persons are not created with sanctifying grace from conception. And so this life is a journey, by means of grace, to find God and eternal salvation. But the journey cannot begin, cannot continue, and cannot succeed, without grace at every step and at every turn. If you never use your free will and reason to seek the higher things of life, you cannot find and obtain eternal happiness. If you never use your free will and reason to seek the higher things of life, then you have committed an actual mortal sin of omission, for which you will be condemned to Hell forever, unless you repent.

Grace is absolutely necessary to live a Christian life and to attain eternal life. No one can hear the Word of God and keep it without the grace of God (cf. Luke 11:28). No one can obey the commandment to love God above all else without grace. No one can obey the commandment to love your neighbor and to love even your enemies, without grace. No one has true spiritual love without grace. No one can avoid sin without grace. And no one can have eternal salvation unless they die in a state of grace.
__________________
Ron Conte
Roman Catholic theologian
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 18th January 2013, 12:09 PM
VKallin VKallin is offline
supporting member
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: North Port, Florida
Posts: 601
Default A simple view

In my very simple mind, I have always felt that grace is to the soul what food is to the body. Without food, the body grows weak and eventually fails. Without grace, the soul will grow weak and eventually fail (fall into sin). We all make determined efforts to ensure that our body has adequate and healthy food. We need to make the same effort for grace.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 18th January 2013, 05:37 PM
Ron Conte Ron Conte is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 12,628
Default

Would anyone care to take a stab at describing or defining prevenient grace?
__________________
Ron Conte
Roman Catholic theologian
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 18th January 2013, 06:43 PM
Shane Shane is offline
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Ireland
Posts: 906
Default

Prevenient grace as a form of grace given by God that predisposes us to co-operate with God's will. An example would be the decision of a person in mortal sin to go to confession. Prevenient grace comes before actual graces in that we can turn towards virtue even if in a state of grave sin. It can mark the beginning of repentance and cooperation with virtue. Different from actual grace in that God gives it to us outside of our choosing, giving us the disposition to turn away from sin. I think that's about it.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 18th January 2013, 08:33 PM
Ron Conte Ron Conte is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 12,628
Default

Good description. I'll add that prevenient grace enlightens the mind, to be able to distinguish good from evil, and frees the will to be able to choose good. So prevenient grace is with both grave sinners and holy Saints and everyone in-between.
__________________
Ron Conte
Roman Catholic theologian
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 24th January 2013, 02:39 AM
ExCelciuS ExCelciuS is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 711
Default Hail Mary, full of Grace ...

Quote:
Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen

Having Mary and Jesus in my life ... , proud to be Catholic, just like the Rosary is a perfect prayer when prayed in and with Holy Spirit.

Ron, is grace and Holy Spirit has something connected (correlation) between it?
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 24th January 2013, 06:58 AM
Ron Conte Ron Conte is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 12,628
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ExCelciuS View Post
is grace and Holy Spirit has something connected (correlation) between it?

grace is an effect in our souls caused directly by God. So the Holy Spirit affects the soul, and that effect is grace.

Grace is not a thing that exists on its own; it is an effect in the soul of the human person.
__________________
Ron Conte
Roman Catholic theologian
Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 02:31 AM.


Powered by vBulletin Version 3.6.0
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.