Models of Purgatory

Jerry L. Walls

in Purgatory

Published in print December 2011 | ISBN: 9780199732296
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199918492 | DOI:
Models of Purgatory

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This chapter shows that there are different models of purgatory, or different ways of construing the primary purpose for it. On one end of the spectrum is the satisfaction model, which understands purgatory as a matter of punishment for sins for which adequate penance was not done in this life. On the other end of the spectrum is the sanctification model, which understands purgatory as a matter of completing the process of moral and spiritual transformation. Other models include elements of both satisfaction and sanctification. Each of these models are examined and criticized in light of strengths as well as weaknesses. It is further suggested that a sanctification model is dominant in current Roman Catholic theology, which is also the model accepted by Protestants who are sympathetic to the doctrine.

Keywords: models of purgatory; satisfaction; sanctification; transformation; debt of punishment; pain; penance; indulgences

Chapter.  17464 words. 

Subjects: Christianity

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