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Traditional Catholic Faith => Crisis in the Church => Topic started by: Banezian on June 04, 2018, 07:47:01 PM

Title: Molinism: The Uncondemned Error
Post by: Banezian on June 04, 2018, 07:47:01 PM
Pelagianism is a huge problem in the Church these days, and it's gotten quite a bit worse since Vatican 2.   This is a result of Molinism. It is truly  one of the most man-centered ideas that remains (sadly) uncondemned. While many Catholics are horrified by it, Predestination and the depravity (not total depravity) of fallen man   is Catholic teaching. If the following quotes from St. Augustine and St. Thomas horrify you, you may fall into the Pelagian/semi-Pelagian camp.

From St. Augustines Enchiridion
"But this part of the human race to which God has promised pardon and a share in His eternal kingdom, can they be restored through the merit of their own works? God forbid. For what good work can a lost man perform, except so far as he has been delivered from perdition? Can they do anything by the free determination of their own will? Again I say, God forbid. For it was by the evil use of his free-will that man destroyed both it and himself. For, as a man who kills himself must, of course, be alive when he kills himself, but after he has killed himself ceases to live, and cannot restore himself to life; so, when man by his own free-will sinned, then sin being victorious over him, the freedom of his will was lost. For of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage. This is the judgment of the Apostle Peter. And as it is certainly true, what kind of liberty, I ask, can the bond-slave possess, except when it pleases him to sin? For he is freely in bondage who does with pleasure the will of his master. Accordingly, he who is the servant of sin is free to sin. And hence he will not be free to do right, until, being freed from sin, he shall begin to be the servant of righteousness. And this is true liberty, for he has pleasure in the righteous deed; and it is at the same time a holy bondage, for he is obedient to the will of God. But whence comes this liberty to do right to the man who is in bondage and sold under sin, except he be redeemed by Him who has said, If the Son shall make you free, you shall be free indeed? And before this redemption is wrought in a man, when he is not yet free to do what is right, how can he talk of the freedom of his will and his good works, except he be inflated by that foolish pride of boasting which the apostle restrains when he says, By grace are you saved, through faith."____

"And further, should any one be inclined to boast, not indeed of his works, but of the freedom of his will, as if the first merit belonged to him, this very liberty of good action being given to him as a reward he had earned, let him listen to this same preacher of grace, when he says: For it is God which works in you, both to will and to do of His own good pleasure; and in another place: So, then, it is not of him that wills, nor of him that runs, but of God that shows mercy. Now as, undoubtedly, if a man is of the age to use his reason, he cannot believe, hope, love, unless he will to do so, nor obtain the prize of the high calling of God unless he voluntarily run for it; in what sense is it not of him that wills, nor of him that runs, but of God that shows mercy, except that, as it is written, the preparation of the heart is from the Lord? Otherwise, if it is said, It is not of him that wills, nor of him that runs, but of God that shows mercy, because it is of both, that is, both of the will of man and of the mercy of God, so that we are to understand the saying, It is not of him that wills, nor of him that runs, but of God that shows mercy, as if it meant the will of man alone is not sufficient, if the mercy of God go not with it — then it will follow that the mercy of God alone is not sufficient, if the will of man go not with it; and therefore, if we may rightly say, it is not of man that wills, but of God that shows mercy, because the will of man by itself is not enough, why may we not also rightly put it in the converse way: It is not of God that shows mercy, but of man that wills, because the mercy of God by itself does not suffice? Surely, if no Christian will dare to say this, It is not of God that shows mercy, but of man that wills, lest he should openly contradict the apostle, it follows that the true interpretation of the saying, It is not of him that wills, nor of him that runs, but of God that shows mercy, is that the whole work belongs to God, who both makes the will of man righteous, and thus prepares it for assistance, and assists it when it is prepared. For the man's righteousness of will precedes many of God's gifts, but not all; and it must itself be included among those which it does not precede. We read in Holy Scripture, both that God's mercy shall meet me, and that His mercy shall follow me. It goes before the unwilling to make him willing; it follows the willing to make his will effectual. Why are we taught to pray for our enemies, who are plainly unwilling to lead a holy life, unless that God may work willingness in them? And why are we ourselves taught to ask that we may receive, unless that He who has created in us the wish, may Himself satisfy the wish? We pray, then, for our enemies, that the mercy of God may prevent them, as it has prevented us: we pray for ourselves that His mercy may follow us."

From St. Thomas
"I answer that, Predestination presupposes election in the order of reason; and election presupposes love. The reason of this is that predestination, as stated above (Article [1] (, is a part of providence. Now providence, as also prudence, is the plan existing in the intellect directing the ordering of some things towards an end; as was proved above (Question [22] (, Article [2] ( But nothing is directed towards an end unless the will for that end already exists. Whence the predestination of some to eternal salvation presupposes, in the order of reason, that God wills their salvation; and to this belong both election and love:—love, inasmuch as He wills them this particular good of eternal salvation; since to love is to wish well to anyone, as stated above (Question [20] (, Articles [2] (,3):—election, inasmuch as He wills this good to some in preference to others; since He reprobates some, as stated above (Article [3] ( Election and love, however, are differently ordered in God, and in ourselves: because in us the will in loving does not cause good, but we are incited to love by the good which already exists; and therefore we choose someone to love, and so election in us precedes love. In God, however, it is the reverse. For His will, by which in loving He wishes good to someone, is the cause of that good possessed by some in preference to others. Thus it is clear that love precedes election in the order of reason, and election precedes predestination. Whence all the predestinate are objects of election and love."
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"On the contrary, It is said (Malachi 1:2,3 (,3)): "I have loved Jacob, but have hated Esau."

I answer that, God does reprobate some. For it was said above (Article [1] ( that predestination is a part of providence. To providence, however, it belongs to permit certain defects in those things which are subject to providence, as was said above (Question [22] ( [2] ( Thus, as men are ordained to eternal life through the providence of God, it likewise is part of that providence to permit some to fall away from that end; this is called reprobation. Thus, as predestination is a part of providence, in regard to those ordained to eternal salvation, so reprobation is a part of providence in regard to those who turn aside from that end. Hence reprobation implies not only foreknowledge, but also something more, as does providence, as was said above (Question [22] ( [1] ( Therefore, as predestination includes the will to confer grace and glory; so also reprobation includes the will to permit a person to fall into sin, and to impose the punishment of damnation on account of that sin."
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[color=rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.870588)]""But if this is all that is understood in this word, since even grace without man's free judgment does not will or strive, he could have said the converse, namely, it does not depends on God's mercy but on man's will or exertion, which is offensive to pious ears. Consequently, something more must be understood from these words, if first place is to be given to God's grace. For an action is attributed more to the principal agent than to the secondary, as when we say that the hammer does not make the box but the carpenter by using the hammer. But man's will is moved to good by God, as it says above: "All who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God" (Rom 8:14 (http://x-apple-data-detectors://1)); therefore, an inward action of man is not to be attributed principally to man but to God: "It is God who of his good pleasure works in you both the will and the performance" (Phil 2:13 (http://x-apple-data-detectors://2)). But if willing does not depend on the man willing or exertion on the man exerting himself, but on God moving man to this, it seems that man is not master of his own action, which pertains to freedom of will. But the answer is that God moves all things, but in diverse ways, inasmuch as each is moved in a manner befitting its nature. And so man is moved by God to will and to perform outwardly in a manner consistent with free will. Therefore, willing and performing depends on man as freely acting; but on God and not on man, as initial mover"( here Thomas echoes Augustine)[/color]
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[color=rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.870588)]From the Council of Orange[/color]
[color=rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.870588)]Canon 13[/color]
[color=rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.870588)]""Concerning the restoration of free will. The freedom of will that was destroyed in the first man can be restored only by the grace of baptism, for what is lost can be returned only by the one who was able to give it. Hence the Truth itself declares: "So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed" (John 8:36 (http://x-apple-data-detectors://0)"[/color]
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[color=rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.870588)]The whole idea is summed up quite well by Fr. Harden [/color]
"The Thomistic explanation of how grace and free will are reconciled begins with the premise that God has eternally predetermined that some people should be saved, and to realize this aim confers effective (efficacious) graces on these elect. He therefore physically affects their free wills, and thus secures that they decide freely to cooperate with His grace. There is an inner power in efficacious grace which infallibly insures that the predestined freely consent to perform such salutary actions as will merit heaven. Consequently efficacious grace is essentially different from merely sufficient grace, which confers the power or ability to place salutary acts, but no more. Before this bare potency can be reduced to action, another and different divine help must be received, namely efficacious grace. Since God has eternally willed the free consent of His chosen ones to the efficacious graces He confers, He thus ineluctably brings about the salvation of those who are included in His loving decree. All the rest who do not come within the ambit of this election are permitted, through the abuse of their freedom, not to attain heaven. The divine motive for this negative reprobation is that God willed to manifest His goodness not only by means of His mercy, but also by means of His justice."
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[color=rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.870588)]The Jansenists were certainly heretical, but I do agree with one of their criticisms of the Church at the time. They argued that if the Church is going to call Augustine "Doctor of Grace", it actually needs to follow and dogmatism his theory of grace. This hasn't been done, and as a result, most Catholics today are Pelagians. Good article on this topic[/color]
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Title: Re: Molinism: The Uncondemned Error
Post by: forlorn on June 05, 2018, 04:11:42 PM
Ugh, I must say with all due respect to St. Augustine, I find his writings nearly impossible to read. If it wasn't for St. Thomas' quote I wouldn't have had a notion what was being said.