Chapter

Reason, Will, and the Graces of Sanctification and Justification

Nigel Voak

in Richard Hooker and Reformed Theology

Published in print March 2003 | ISBN: 9780199260393
Published online January 2005 | e-ISBN: 9780191602146 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0199260397.003.0005

Series: Oxford Theological Monographs

 Reason, Will, and the Graces of Sanctification and Justification

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Taking a complementary approach to ch. 3, this chapter examines the reason and the will of (elect) Christians, who are in receipt of sanctifying (and justifying) grace. Hooker’s views on justification are discussed initially, where it is argued that although throughout his life he was a firm advocate of forensic theory, he moved in the Lawes and his late writings to the position that justification can be lost, and then subsequently regained with the aid of repentance, and that in this context it makes sense to speak of a person congruously meriting justification. This is then allied to his views on sanctification, involving a discussion of the three theological virtues, mortal and venial sin, and supererogation, all of which are again contrasted with the approach of contemporary Reformed theology. Then moves on to look at Hooker’s views on the interaction between Christians and the Holy Spirit, principally through the authentication and interpretation of Holy Scripture, and knowledge of election, all of which say a good deal about his theological development. This makes an excellent springboard for a final analysis of religious authority, where it is argued that Hooker, as has traditionally been claimed, upheld the authority of scripture, reason, and tradition, in that order, contrary to the Reformed, and more generally Protestant, doctrine of sola scriptura.

Keywords: divine law; grace; John Calvin; justification; Holy Scripture; Holy Spirit; merit; reason; religious authority; sanctification; will

Chapter.  43585 words. 

Subjects: Christian Theology

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