Chapter

How to Be Holy

Brian Davies

in The Thought of Thomas Aquinas

Published in print February 1993 | ISBN: 9780198267539
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191600500 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0198267533.003.0013

Series: Clarendon Paperbacks

 How to Be Holy

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This chapter begins to connect what Thomas Aquinas says about people in general with his teaching on the Trinity – his position being that the Trinity makes us divine since God, who is the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, brings us to the final or ultimate good or end of rational creatures, which is nothing less than God himself. It starts by considering Aquinas’ claim that God is the means by which we can be better than we are when considered as merely human. This raising up of people to union with God is part of a long story that he distinguishes into definite stages: the start of the human race at the time of the biblical story of Adam; the time of application of the Old Law (the Torah, or the commands and injunctions in the early books of the Old Testament); and the time of application of the New Law (which started with the sending of the Son and the Spirit, and consists chiefly of the grace of the Holy Spirit, shown by faith working through love, which the people receive through God's Son). The rest of the chapter is devoted to a discussion of grace (including theological virtues, and the fall of Adam), and of the causes and kinds of grace.

Keywords: Adam; Thomas Aquinas; faith; God; God's Son; grace; holiness; Holy Ghost; love; New Law; Old Law; Trinity

Chapter.  10526 words. 

Subjects: Christian Theology

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