DIVINE GRACE

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Message  Javier le Lun 01 Juil 2019, 4:35 am

In the Holy Scriptures this grace
is compared to a garment;
just as a beautiful
garment is used to adorn the body and make it
pleasing in the eyes of men
, so sanctifying grace clothes
and adorns the soul, giving it a supernatural
beauty and making it pleasing in the eyes of
God.
"I will greatly rejoice in the Lord,
and my soul shall be joyful in my God ; for
He hath clothed me with the garments of
salvation ; with the robe of justice He
hath covered me, as a bridegroom decked
with a crown and as a bride adorned with
jewels."
1 As long as we have this grace we
shall remain in the love of God
; and " He
that abideth in charity, abideth in God, and
God in him. God is charity."
2

Every grace is a supernatural gift ; both
actual and sanctifying grace are supernatural ;
both belong to the order of salvation; both
come from God, and are given to us to lead
us to God. They differ from each other in
this, that actual grace is given us to help us
to do good and avoid evil, whereas sanctifying
grace is given us that it may remain in
the soul and make it pleasing to God.
Actual
grace is given to all men, saints and sinners, to
the heathen and the Christian
; God wishes all
men to be saved,
and gives to all the actual
grace necessary to enable them to do what
is required for salvation.
Sanctifying grace
is possessed only by the children of God;

only they who are baptized and free from
mortal sin have this special gift of God's love.


Actual grace disposes the soul for the reception
of sanctifying grace, and after sanctifying grace
has been received in the soul actual grace continually
moves man to know and to will what is commanded
by God and what is pleasing to Him.
Both actual grace
and sanctifying grace are necessary for us
— sanctifying grace that we become children of God,
actual grace that we live as His children, loving Him and serving Him.



1 Is. 61. 10.
2 I John 4. 16.


COMING NEXT... NATURE OF SANCTIFYING GRACE
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Message  Javier le Mar 02 Juil 2019, 11:38 am

III - NATURE OF SANCTIFYING GRACE

What is sanctifying grace ?
Sanctifying grace is that grace which makes the soul
holy and pleasing to God.



One of the most beautiful parables which
our Lord told for the instruction of His
hearers was that of the heavenly marriage-feast.
He said : " The kingdom of heaven
is likened to a king who made a marriage for
his son. And he sent his servants to call
them that were invited to the marriage : and
they would not come. Again he sent other
servants, saying, Tell them that were invited,
Behold, I have prepared my dinner; my
beeves and fatlings are killed, and all things
are ready; come ye to the marriage. But
they neglected and went their ways, one
to his farm, and another to his merchandise.
And the rest laid hands on his servants, and
having treated them contumeliously, put
them to death. But when the king had
heard of it, he was angry, and sending his
armies, he destroyed those murderers, and
burned their city. Then he saith to his servants:
The marriage indeed is ready; but
they that were invited were not worthy.
Go ye, therefore, into the highways, and as
many as you shall find, invite to the marriage.
And his servants going forth into
the ways gathered together all that they
found, both bad and good ; and the marriage
was filled with guests. And the king went
in to see the guests ; and he saw there a man
who had not on a wedding garment. And
he said to him: Friend, how camest thou
in hither, not having on a wedding garment ?
But he was silent. Then the king said to
the waiters: Bind his hands and feet, and
cast him into the exterior darkness ; there
shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
For many are called, but few are chosen."
1

We can interpret this parable in the following
manner: The king is God, the Father,
who makes a marriage-feast for His
Son.
Through His servants, the priests,
He invites all men to this feast, the happiness
of heaven ; all are to have part in enjoying
the glory of the Son of God.
This
feast takes place in the kingly palace, where
everything is most beautiful,
and hence the
guests are to come clothed in an especial
wedding-garment.
This garment can be
obtained by every one.
In fact in the East
it was customary that such a garment be
sent by the person giving the feast to each
of the invited guests. This garment is to
make our souls beautiful in the eyes of God ;

it is the garment of sanctifying grace.
Without this garment we cannot take part
in the pleasures of the heavenly banquet.

He who comes into eternity without it will
not be admitted into heaven, but will be cast
into exterior darkness, where there is weeping
and gnashing of teeth.
Such a one must
be silent when God asks him, Friend, how
did you come hither, not having on a wedding-garment?

He cannot excuse himself on the plea of poverty
because God sent him such a garment ;and if
he does not wear it, it is through his own neglect.
He knew that such a garment was necessary;
it was even sent to him ;
he has therefore no excuse to
offer.
Without sanctifying grace we cannot
please God ; we cannot enjoy the happiness
of heaven.
For this reason the instruction
on sanctifying grace is most important.
We
should try to learn what is meant when we
hear the words, sanctifying grace, state of
grace, justification, etc.



1 Matt. 22. 2 seqq.

TBC...

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Message  Javier le Mer 03 Juil 2019, 10:50 am

When we understand what a precious
gift sanctifying grace is,
then we will be
more anxious to preserve it in our hearts.

Our catechism tells us that sanctifying grace
is that grace which makes the soul holy
and pleasing to God. What sanctifying
grace is in itself is difficult to explain, but
we can get some idea of it by considering
its origin and its effects upon the soul.
As
to its origin, it is, like actual grace,
a free
gift of God.
The Holy Ghost distributes
the fruits of the Redemption ; He is the distributer
of grace. Actual grace is also a gift
of the Holy Ghost, but sanctifying grace is
a gift of the Holy Ghost in an especial manner.
The Holy Ghost is the Sanctifier,
and by this grace we are made holy, and
are sanctified in the eyes of God.


Like all grace, sanctifying grace is a supernatural
gift of God. God did not create us
for this world, that we should live here and
seek our happiness on this earth ; for the
things of this world can never satisfy the
desire of the heart of man.
Our end lies
beyond this life, that is, we are made for a
supernatural end. God has made us for
heaven; the vision and possession of God
Himself is the purpose for which we are
created, and in this our happiness is to consist.


To reach this supernatural end our
natural powers are not sufficient. We cannot
of our own natural strength reach that
which is above nature;
we need supernatural
faculties to do supernatural works worthy of
a supernatural reward.
These supernatural
faculties are given us by the Holy Ghost
in sanctifying grace, which makes us holy
before God and entitles us to enter a supernatural
community of life with God and the saints.


TBC...

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Message  Javier le Jeu 04 Juil 2019, 12:13 pm

How does the Holy Ghost give us sanctifying grace?

He gives us sanctifying grace by entering our
souls and working there our sanctification
;
as St. Paul says, " The charity of God is poured
forth in our hearts, by the Holy Ghost, who is given to us."
1
By sanctifying grace the Holy Ghost Himself comes
into our souls, and thus we enter into a
most close union with God.
St. Thomas
Aquinas calls grace a participation of the
divine nature on the part of man, and a
communication of the divine nature on the part
of God.
This is well founded in the Holy
Scriptures. Our Lord said, " If any one love
Me, he will keep My word, and My Father
will love him, and We will come to him and
will make Our abode with him."
2 There
is then, according to the teaching of Jesus, a
most intimate union between God and them
that love Him ;
God dwells in them. They
are no longer "strangers and foreigners, but
fellow-citizens and domestics of God."
3 The
teaching of St. Thomas that grace is a communication
of the divine nature is founded on the words of St. Peter,
"He hath given us most great and precious promises that by
these we may be made partakers of the
divine nature."
4


1 Rom. 5. 5.
2 John 14. 23.
3 Eph. 2. 19.
4 2 Peter 1. 4.


TBC...
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Message  Javier le Sam 06 Juil 2019, 5:16 am

This communication of the divine nature
is not to be understood as though God gave
man a part of His being, or that man by
grace becomes God.
The sense is that just
as God, the Father, communicates His
nature to the Son, who by this becomes like
the Father in nature, so in a similar manner
He turns to them whom He loves, and makes
them more like Himself than they were
before by nature.
The communication of
is nature to the Son is the pattern, the
communication of His nature by grace,
the imitation. The Son is the same as
the Father in nature,
man by sanctifying
grace becomes an image of God.
We are
created according to the image and likeness
of God ; by grace this image becomes more
exact and pronounced.
Out of love for His
only Son, the Father turns to man and
makes him like Himself, calling him to
eternal happiness.
Through grace a new
life, which is supernatural, is implanted in
him ; this gives him higher powers. By
reason of these supernatural faculties which
come from grace, man can perform acts
which are supernatural, which make him
worthy of a supernatural reward, and raise
him to a communion with God.
By the
working of the Holy Ghost man is raised
above nature.


TBC...

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Message  Javier le Mar 09 Juil 2019, 4:39 am

From what has been said we can form
some idea of the beauty and value of sanctifying
grace.
It is a gift of the Holy Ghost
and that not an ordinary one, but a supernatural gift
one that is above all the things
of nature in beauty and value.
It is given
us through the infinite love of God, in order
that we might enter into the closest union
with Him. It is a most beautiful garment
— the wedding-garment which makes us
worthy of the heavenly wedding-feast of the
Son of God.
It is a divine power, dwelling
in the soul, a glowing light which makes
our souls so beautiful, that if it were given
to any one to see a soul adorned with sanctifying
grace, he would be tempted to take that soul for
God Himself.
Grace makes us
like God as much as a creature can become
like Him. Grace is, therefore, of immeasurable
value ; the least degree of grace is
infinitely more precious than all the goods
of this world. If we possessed the whole
world, it could not be compared with the
smallest degree of grace given to the humblest
Christian.


Sanctifying grace is worth as much to us as
God Himself, for without it we cannot possess God,
and with it God is ours.
Grace is, as it were, the document
that assures us of His possession, and gives
us a right to the inheritance of heaven.

Even if some one could come into heaven
without possessing grace, which is impossible,
he would not be able to see God or
enjoy the happiness of the just, because he
would lack the supernatural light that enables
the saints to see God. Like the man
in the parable of the wedding-feast, he would
be cast out into exterior darkness ; darkness
and eternal death is the only state which is
fit for one who, through his own fault, has
neglected to appear before God clothed in
the wedding-garment of sanctifying grace.

This we see in what God has revealed to us
of the history of the angels.

TBC...

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Message  Javier le Mer 10 Juil 2019, 5:47 am

In the beginning God created the angels
and gave them sanctifying grace ; they were
all good and pleasing to God when they
were first created ; but some of them sinned,
and by sin lost the grace God had given
them. They were cast out of heaven and
hurled into hell forever. Having lost their
wedding-garment, they were no longer
worthy to enjoy the feast of heaven. If sorrow
could find a place in heaven, then we
would say that there was the greatest sorrow
among the good angels at the terrible lot of
these unfaithful ones ; we would imagine that
they looked with sadness at the places left
vacant by the punishment of their fallen
companions.
These places were, however,
not always to remain vacant ;
like the king
in the parable, God wished His house to be
full; and for this reason He decreed to
create other beings to take the place of these
fallen angels.
God decided to make man
and to clothe him from the beginning with
sanctifying grace.
First He formed a body
from the slime of the earth, then He breathed
into it an immortal soul, which was endowed
with understanding and free will. At the same
time He adorned it with the supernatural
beauty of sanctifying grace.
Man was to be happy forever ;
he was to live a short time here upon earth, free from trouble,
care, and sickness, yes, even death was to be
unknown to him ; then he was to be taken
into eternal happiness, to enjoy for eternity
the possession of God, and the companionship
of the angels.
Because God created
man for a supernatural end,
He also gave
him the supernatural powers of sanctifying
grace,
that he might be enabled to know,
love, and serve God in a supernatural manner,
and so merit that happiness for which he was created.


TBC...

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Message  Javier le Jeu 11 Juil 2019, 4:38 am

God wished a free service ; He did not
wish to force man to remain in the state in
which He had created him ; man was to decide
for himself whether he would remain
in the state of grace and serve God or not ;
he was to prove his worthiness by an act of
obedience;
and for this reason God gave
him free will.
God tried man; He gave
him a commandment not to eat of the fruit
of a certain tree in the garden of Paradise,
lest he should die.
Had our first parents
remained faithful to the command of God,
they would have remained in the happy
state of sanctifying grace, they would, after
a short stay upon earth, have been transferred
to the joys of heaven without first
tasting the bitter cup of death ; mankind
would have occupied the places left vacant
by the fall of the angels.
Unfortunately,
Adam and Eve transgressed the command
of God, and ate of the forbidden fruit ; they
lost sanctifying grace and with it their right
to eternal happiness. Just as they were
to transmit their state of grace and the
friendship of God to their descendants, so
they transmitted their human nature,
deprived of grace and infected with sin and
its consequences. No one was able to obtain
heaven and be saved ; all should have
been lost forever,
had not God shown mercy
to man, and sent him a Redeemer.
God,
moved by pity, promised man a Redeemer
who would atone for the sins of the world.
This Redeemer was the only Son of God,
who became man and suffered for us. He
has atoned for our sins, reconciled us with
God, opened again the gates of heaven
which sin had closed. By His death He
"blotted out the handwriting of the decree
that was against us, . . . fastening it to the
cross."
1 As His death has been our life,
"by His bruises we are healed." 2
When
Jesus died, He died for the salvation of
all men; all are to receive the benefit of
His death. That this might be brought
about, He instituted a Church in which He
left the Sacraments, those channels of grace
through which grace flows to men. By the
Sacraments the benefits of the Redemption
are given to us ; they are the means instituted
to reconcile us with God. This is done first through
Baptism.


1 Col. 2. 14.
2 Is. 53. 5.


TBC...

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Message  Javier le Sam 13 Juil 2019, 5:24 am

What are the effects of sanctifying grace ?

What happens in the soul when we receive
the grace of God ? God acts on the powers
of the soul by actual grace, but by
sanctifying grace He produces a still deeper
effect. He acts on the soul itself. He
gives the soul a new life and transforms its
nature.
Before man receives sanctifying
grace he is a sinner; he lacks the properties
which God looks for in one who is His
friend ; the image of God is blurred.
This
soul now receives sanctifying grace; immediately
a great change takes place;
sin is
destroyed, everything that is displeasing to
God is removed;
he who a little while before
was a sinner is now just, i.e. he is as
Adam and Eve were before they fell into
sin ; he is now an object of God's pleasure,
a friend of God. By grace sin is remitted,
and man from a sinner becomes a friend of
God.


The remission of sin is not the only effect
of sanctifying grace ;
its effect is much more
far-reaching. When God forbade our first
parents to eat of the fruit of a certain tree
in the Garden of Paradise, He said, "On
what day soever thou shalt eat of it, thou
shalt die the death."
1 The death here
spoken of is a twofold death,
the death of
the body
by the separation of the soul from
the body, and the death of the soul. They
broke the commandment of God, and the
punishment followed ; the death of the body
did not come at once, but the death of the
soul was inflicted immediately.
This death
of the soul consisted in the loss of sanctifying
grace and of all the supernatural gifts
and benefits that accompany grace.
Sanctifying
grace is the life of the soul,
and by its
loss Adam and Eve became dead in the
sight of God; they lost their supernatural
life. This sin, with all its consequences, has
come down from Adam to all his descendants;
it is called original sin.
The first
effect of original sin is the loss of sanctifying
grace,
and until one is born again in
Baptism
he is spiritually dead ; should he
die in this state, he could never have eternal
life in heaven.
Through the operation of
the Holy Ghost who sanctifies us by grace,
received in Baptism, we are brought back to
life again.
Thus Baptism is a second birth,
and being born, this time of God, we are
the children of God. After the remission
of sin the chief effect of sanctifying grace
is to make us children of God.



1 Gen. 2. 17.

TBC...

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Message  Javier le Lun 15 Juil 2019, 5:22 am

A child has certain rights. It has a
certain right to the possessions of its father,
it has a certain right to be his heir. If
then, in Baptism we receive grace which
makes us children of God, we receive also
the right to the possessions of God. God
is our Father; hence we have a right to
live in His house, to enjoy the pleasures
and happiness of His home. We become,
through sanctifying grace, heirs of heaven.
"For the Spirit Himself giveth testimony
to our spirit, that we are the sons of God ;
and if sons, heirs also ; heirs indeed of God
and joint-heirs with Christ ; yet so, if we
suffer with Him, that we may be also glorified
with Him."
1 This means that if we
remain true to God, and preserve sanctifying grace
despite all the sufferings, temptations and allurements
of the world, then we shall also possess heaven as our
inheritance, then we shall possess God and all
the riches, pleasures, and happiness which
belong to Him, because we are His children.

Such a promise is certainly worth
our best endeavor, for
"The sufferings of
this present time are not worthy to be
compared with the glory to come, that shall
be revealed in us."
2 When a man receives
sanctifying grace,
there is no change outwardly
visible to the eye,
the change is all
within ;
but in eternity we shall see the
beauty of the soul in sanctifying grace;
then its beauty and glory shall be revealed.

With the eye of faith we can see, even
now, the excellence of grace ; through faith
we understand the greatness of the effects
produced:
it makes us just before God, i.e.
our sins are blotted out; it makes us children
of God and heirs of heaven. By grace
we are preserved from eternal punishment
which was our due — instead of eternal punishment
eternal happiness awaits us. This
change is worthy of our admiration and
gratitude.
Who can appreciate sufficiently
the value of this gift, since it makes us
worthy to call God our Father?
It is,
indeed, above every other gift, and God gives
it to us,
not because we have deserved it,
but out of pure mercy and love.


1 Rom. 8. 16, 17.
1 Rom. 8. 18.


To be continued...

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Message  Javier le Mer 17 Juil 2019, 5:16 am

Sanctifying grace is a gift of love — it is
not earned by anything that we have done.
God, seeing our miserable condition, was
moved by mercy, and gave us the aid of
His grace that we might be enabled to do
good and merit heaven as a reward, and
so be eternally happy. If God had not
taken pity on us, we should have perished
forever.
"But when the goodness and
kindness of God our Saviour appeared, not by
the works of justice which we have done,
but according to His mercy He saved us,
by the laver of regeneration and renovation
of the Holy Ghost, whom He hath poured
forth abundantly through Jesus Christ, our
Saviour, that being justified by His grace,
we may be heirs, according to hope, of life
everlasting."
1

When did we receive sanctifying grace?
Was it not when we were small, and unable
to do anything good or bad, that we were
baptized and cleansed from original sin, and
so from sinners were made sons of God?

The sinner, too, who, being baptized and
having lost sanctifying grace by mortal sin,
is again reinstated in grace and the friendship
of God at a time, when, on account of
the state of sin in which he is, he cannot
do anything to please God.
Grace is therefore
evidently an undeserved gift of God.


There are many children born in distant
countries, where paganism still reigns ; these
do not receive the gift of Baptism with the
benefits attached to it. Why were we
chosen?
There can be no other reason
than the free will of God, who had mercy
on us.
"It is not of him that willeth, nor of
him that runneth, but of God that showeth
mercy. . . . Therefore He hath mercy on
whom He will."
2 On some of the islands of
the South Sea there are now many good,
believing Catholics; when the first Catholic
missionaries arrived in those places
they were persecuted and put to death.
Did these people deserve the gift of faith
and grace ? Certainly not ; they opposed
the mercy of God calling them to grace,
and yet finally they received the gift of
faith, and were baptized. It was the love of
God that was the cause of all this ;
of themselves
they had deserved the very opposite.



1 Titus 3. 4-7.
1 Rom. 9. 16-18.


To be continued...
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Message  Javier le Ven 19 Juil 2019, 5:29 am

When we say that sanctifying grace is an
undeserved gift we mean to say that it is
undeserved on our part;
we do not say
that it has not been deserved at all. Jesus
died to obtain grace for us.
God gives us
grace on account of the superabundant
merits of Christ.
"Justified freely by His
grace, through the Redemption that is in
Christ Jesus."
1 Justification does not come
to us through our own merits;
it is gratis ;
it comes to us through the Redemption of
Christ.


Since we have received this grace in Baptism
without any merits of our own, purely
through the kindness and mercy of God,
we
should show our gratitude to God for the
love He has shown to us by looking upon
grace as the most valuable gift that we can
possess.
We should be anxious to preserve
it and to have it ever in our hearts.
Sanctifying
grace differs from actual grace in this,
that, whereas actual grace is only a passing gift,
sanctifying grace remains in our soul
until it is driven out by mortal sin.
For this
reason it is also called habitual grace.


1 Rom. 3. 24.

To be continued...

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"Since we have received this grace in Baptism
without any merits of our own, purely
through the kindness and mercy of God,
we
should show our gratitude to God for the
love He has shown to us by looking upon
grace as the most valuable gift that we can
possess.
We should be anxious to preserve
it and to have it ever in our hearts."
Javier
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Message  Javier le Sam 20 Juil 2019, 12:13 pm

Sanctifying grace is called grace of justification
or simply justification. The Apostle
says of Baptism by which we receive sanctifying
grace: "But you are washed, but you
are sanctified, but you are justified, in the
name of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the
Spirit of our God."
1 What do we mean by
justification ?
A boy goes into an orchard
and takes some apples. The orchard does
not belong to his parents, and hence he is
accused of stealing. He excuses himself
by saying that the orchard belongs to his
uncle, who told him that he might take all
the apples he wished. If this story is true,
is the boy deserving of punishment for taking
the apples ? Evidently not ; he proved
that what he did was not wrong ; he justified
himself. To justify one's self means, then, to
clear one's self of the accusation of having
done wrong.
When our first parents sinned,
God came to them and showed them their
sin. They tried to justify themselves ; Adam
put the blame on Eve, and she blamed the serpent
— but they could not justify themselves
because they had only idle excuses to give.

God punished them for their sin, but taking
pity on them He promised to send them a
Redeemer, who was to take away their sin
and regain grace for them ; He was to make
good the harm done ; He was to justify them.

To justify can, therefore, also mean to make
good a wrong.
Justification does away with
sin and makes good the harm done by sin ;
it restores us to the state of friendship
with God, from which we fell through sin.

Because by sanctifying grace sin is destroyed
and man is made holy and just, it is called
justifying grace.



1 1 Cor. 6. 11.

COMING NEXT... Justification includes two things — the
cleansing from sin and interior sanctification.

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Message  Javier le Mar 23 Juil 2019, 6:27 am

Justification includes two things — the
cleansing from sin and interior sanctification.

Hence the Apostle says, "You are
washed,"
i.e. you are freed from sins, " You are
sanctified,"
i.e. you have been made holy and
pleasing to God, you have been born again,

" You are justified," i.e. freed from sin and
sanctified.
To be "justified in the name of
our Lord, Jesus Christ,"
signifies that, through
the merits of Jesus Christ, we receive forgiveness
of our sins, and are made holy and just
in the eyes of God.
" Justified in the Spirit
of our God,"
means that we receive forgiveness
of our sins and interior sanctity from
the Holy Ghost, because to Him, as the love
of the Father, is ascribed sanctification.


The teaching of the Catholic Church on
justification is,
as we have seen, that by
sanctifying grace the sinner is placed in a
state of interior supernatural sanctity.
By
justification we mean that the soul is freed
from sin, reborn to a new life, and renewed ;
that it is made holy and pleasing in the
eyes of God.


The heretics of the sixteenth
century said that justification was not a
remission of sins, but consisted in covering
them up ; that God, on account of the
merits of Jesus Christ, did not punish our
sins, if we believed in the Redemption of
Christ. According to them the sins are not
forgiven, but only overlooked ; they are still
in the soul, but on account of the merits of
Jesus we are not punished for them. If this
were true, there would be no real justification,
there would be no raising of the sinner to
a supernatural life, the soul would not be
really healed of its infirmities.


But we know from Sacred Scripture that
"by His bruises we have been healed." 1
St. Paul teaches the Christians, " You have been washed, you
have been sanctified,"
and again, " We were
by nature the children of wrath, even as the
rest ; but God (who is rich in mercy), for
His exceeding charity wherewith He loved
us, even when we were dead in sin, hath quickened
us together in Christ (by whose grace
you are saved), and hath raised us up together ;
and hath made us sit together in the
heavenly places, through Christ Jesus."
2
Here the Apostle clearly teaches that justification
consists in raising the spiritually dead
to life,
that it consists in transferring the
sinner from a state of wrath to a state of
the love of God, that it is a uniting of him
who was a sinner with Jesus, and making
him worthy of the kingdom of heaven.
This
is evidently a good deal more than merely
covering over sin, and not punishing sin,
which still remains in the soul.


1 Is. 53. 5.
2 Eph. 2. 3 seqq.


COMING UP... Sanctifying grace is often compared to a
garment.

Javier
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Message  Javier le Mer 24 Juil 2019, 12:03 pm

Sanctifying grace is often compared to a
garment. We hear the expression that our
first parents were created, clothed with the
garments of sanctifying grace — or that in
Baptism we receive the garment of innocence.

To indicate this the priest lays a
white garment, on the child when he baptizes.
This is a figure of speech ; it does
not mean that the soul is only clothed externally
with innocence, and that inwardly
the sin might still remain ; no, it means that
just as a white garment is an ornament which
makes the body beautiful, so the soul is made
beautiful by grace, that by grace the soul is
adorned as the bride of Jesus Christ.
There
can be no covering up of inward ugliness,
so that the all-seeing eye of God should not
see it. That a soul be beautiful in the eyes
of God, it must be all beautiful, not merely
dressed in a beautiful garment.


To be continued...

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Message  Javier le Ven 26 Juil 2019, 12:36 pm

We will, then, believe with the Catholic
Church that by sanctifying grace man is
really sanctified and justified,
i.e. that by
sanctifying grace sin is truly blotted out, and
that the soul is interiorly sanctified,
so that
" there is now, therefore, no condemnation to
them that are in Christ Jesus, who walk not
according to the flesh."
1 Through
sanctifying grace they have been " renewed in
the spirit of their mind, and put on the new
man, who according to God is created in
justice and holiness of truth."
2 Born of God
they are the children of God and heirs of
the heavenly kingdom. "Behold what manner
of charity the Father hath bestowed on
us, that we should be called and should be the
sons of God.
Therefore the world knoweth
not us, because it knew not Him.
 Dearly
beloved, we are now the sons of God, and it
hath not yet appeared what we shall be.
We know that, when He shall appear, we
shall be like to Him, because we shall see
Him as He is."
3


1 Rom. 8. I.
2 Eph. 4. 23.
3 John 3. 1.


Coming up... HOW JUSTIFICATION IS OBTAINED
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Message  Javier le Dim 28 Juil 2019, 4:39 am

IV - HOW JUSTIFICATION IS OBTAINED


Before the sin of our first parents the
most perfect order existed in the world ; in
nature one thing was subject to the other,
one order of beings to the other, and all lower
nature was subject to man, who was the lord
of creation. In man himself the same perfect
order existed:
the lower faculties were
subject to the higher.
All creation with
man at its head was subject to God, the
Maker of all things,
but when sin came
all this was changed ; sin brought disorder.

The disorder caused by sin is especially seen
in the human soul;
the image of the Creator
is not as clear as it was when the soul was
created; sin has blurred it.
This sad condition
of the soul must not last, the soul in
that condition cannot be pleasing to God,

the former happy relation with its Maker
must be reestablished. The soul must be
justified.
To obtain justification and to retain it
is the most necessary and most important task of man in this life;
it is his life's work.


Coming up... How can man obtain justification?
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Message  Javier le Mar 30 Juil 2019, 9:42 am

How can man obtain justification? No
one can be justified except through grace
obtained through the merits of Jesus Christ.

This we have already seen, but the question
still remains, How are the merits of Christ
applied to our soul that we may be justified
through them?
Before the institution
of the Old Law men were justified by the
belief and hope in the promised Redeemer,
joined to a good life. In the Old Law the
Israelites were justified through their belief
and hope in the Redeemer to come, and by
the observance of the Law of God and the
reception of the Old Testament sacraments.

The children who had not yet obtained the
use of reason must have been justified by
belonging to the chosen people of God without
any act on their part.

In the New Law children are justified
by Baptism without any act of their own.
They are baptized in the faith of the Church.
Their duties as regards Baptism begin when
they receive the use of their reason,
and so
become able to do good.
With grown persons
it is quite different.
Grace does the
greater part in the work of justification, but
man must also do his part ; he must cooperate
with the grace of God. God and man
work together, and so the work of iustification
is performed.
Let us now briefly consider
how this work of sanctification is
brought about.

TBC...
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Message  Javier le Jeu 01 Aoû 2019, 11:12 am

The work of justification is begun by God.
He gives man the gratuitous gift of preventing grace,
which is no other than actual grace.
Actual grace
has various names; when it is given to us to begin a good work
it is called preventing grace, that is, that goes before the good work,
for this is the meaning of "preventing," from the Latin
word "praevenire," to go before ;
when it is
given us to help us perform a good work already begun,
it is called concomitant grace or accompanying grace ;
and when it is given to help us complete a good work, it is called
subsequent or following grace.
We need
God's help to begin, continue, and finish
every good and salutary work; we need
therefore for every good work God's preventing,
concomitant, and subsequent grace.


The work of justification, which is the greatest
of all,
must therefore be begun by the
grace of God.
God so acts on our intellect
and free will that, through the light of His
actual grace we recognize our helpless condition,
and so moves our will that we turn to
Him and seek help from Him.



To be continued...
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Message  Javier le Dim 04 Aoû 2019, 5:36 am

This merciful action of God on the
understanding and will of man is often joined to
some external event.
Let us see an example.
We read in the life of St. Norbert 1 that in
his youth he had been very careless, that he
had fallen in with bad companions, and was
on the broad road that leads to perdition.

One day as he was riding on horseback to
meet some of these bad companions, the
lightning struck the ground before his horse,
and he heard a voice upbraiding him for his
bad life. Norbert, like St. Paul, asked, " Lord,
what wilt Thou have me do ? "
2 And he
received the answer to leave sin and to do
good.
From that day on Norbert was a
changed man. He left his evil companions,
became a priest, and converted many sinners
and heretics to Christ. He also founded the
order of the Praemonstratensians. In this
way God dealt with this young man, and
called him by His grace to become one of His
most faithful servants.
The internal grace,
which God gave Norbert to see his deplorable
condition and to move him to repentance,
was joined to some external sign, — a
stroke of lightning. Had God not given
him His grace,
Norbert, instead of becoming
a saint and leading a great multitude of
people to God,
would have been lost himself,
and in all probability would have been
the cause of the damnation of many others.



1 Bollandists', Acta Sanct. Junii 6.
2 Acts 9. 6.


To be continued...

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Message  Javier le Mar 06 Aoû 2019, 4:29 am

At times the grace of conversion is
occasioned by the hearing of the word
of God, the advice of a friend, or some other
external means,
to turn the mind and heart
to God.
These external things only accompany
the grace of God ;
grace itself is internal ;
it is an illumination of the mind and a
moving of the heart.
It is not necessary
that it should always be joined to something
external, and, in fact, the ordinary way in
which God calls the sinner is not through
these extraordinary outer helps.
How often
it happens that the thought comes to one,
What would become of me if I should die
now ?
I know that I am in great danger of
being lost forever if I remain in sin. I will
make all things right; I will go to confession.

These thoughts are from the grace of God,
which is calling the sinner to repentance ;
they are the effect of the preventing grace of God.


To be continued...
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Message  Javier le Ven 09 Aoû 2019, 5:14 am

God is " Alpha and Omega, the beginning
and the end."
1 From Him the beginning
of justification must come. He makes that
beginning,
for every one receives sufficient
grace to be saved.
He loved us first,
and even while we are sinners He loves
us and seeks us; He wishes to bring
us back to Him; He goes out to seek
the sheep that was lost; He calls us to
repentance.
God gives every sinner His
grace,
but the sinner cannot be idle; he,
too, must do something ;
he must accept the
grace of God and cooperate with it.
How
must man cooperate with the grace of God ?
He must believe in God, hope in Him, and
begin to love him as the fountain of all
justice, receive the sacrament of Baptism,
or, if he be already baptized, the sacrament
of Penance.
2

We will first consider justification through the sacrament of Baptism.
Children receive sanctifying grace without
any act of their own, as we have already
mentioned ; the question is, therefore, entirely
concerning those that have the use
of reason. Of these St. Augustine says,
"He who has created thee without thee,
will not justify thee without thee."
3

We must bear in mind that without the
grace of God we can do nothing for our
salvation,
and that if certain acts are required
by which we dispose ourselves for justification,

even in these acts we are dependent on the grace of God.
God it is who worketh in us the willing and the doing
of every good work. The grace of God
must move us to every good work, and must
assist us in the doing of it.



1 Apoc. I. 8.
2 Con. Trid. Sess. 6, c. 6.
3 Serm. 15, de Verb. Apost. c II.


To be continued...
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Message  Javier le Lun 12 Aoû 2019, 11:13 am

With the grace of God, therefore, the
sinner must believe, hope, and begin to love
God and repent of his sins. By faith, hope,
and love or charity, as a preparation for Baptism,
are not understood the divine virtues
of faith, hope, and charity; these are only
infused into the soul of man through Baptism ;
but they are acts performed under
the influence of actual grace. An example
of how men must prepare themselves for
Baptism we have in the manner in which
the people of Jerusalem received the first
sermon of St. Peter, 1 and were converted by
it. God made the beginning by enlightening
them through the words of St. Peter
and by the internal light of His grace
which He gave them. What did they do on
their part ? They believed the words of the
Apostle; they believed that Jesus, whom
they had put to death, was the promised
Messias. In their hearts arose the desire
that the promises made by God, through
the prophets, might be fulfilled in them, that
is, they hoped for supernatural benefits. By
asking, " What shall we do ? " they expressed
their willingness to do the will of God, that is,

they began to love God. " If thou wilt enter
into life, keep the commandments."
2 We
read further that three thousand were baptized
and did penance. To do penance means to
be sorry for one's sins, to propose not to sin
any more, to lead a good life, and
to make satisfaction for the sins committed.


1 Acts. 2.
2 Matt. 19. 17.


To be continued...
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Message  Javier le Mer 14 Aoû 2019, 11:48 am

The necessity of these acts of faith, hope,
love, and repentance we learn
from the teaching
of the Catholic Church. As regards
faith our Lord teaches us its necessity in the
instruction He gave His apostles : " Go ye
into the whole world and preach the gospel
to every creature. He that believeth and is
baptized shall be saved, but he that believeth
not shall be condemned."
1 Our Lord says
that we must first believe and then be
baptized ; he that believeth not shall be
condemned, even if he be baptized. This belief
must be from the heart;
the mere outward
profession is not sufficient.
This we see
from the example of the eunuch of the
Queen of Ethiopia whom St. Philip instructed.
After he had been instructed he
said to Philip, "See, here is water, what
doth hinder me from being baptized ? And
Philip said, If thou believest with all thy
heart thou mayest."
2 After the eunuch had
answered that he believed that Jesus is
the Son of God, Philip baptized him. Faith
is, therefore, the first reguisite for justification ;

it is the ground and root of justification.


1 Mark 16. 16.
2 Acts 8. 36, 37.


To be continued...
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Message  Javier le Lun 19 Aoû 2019, 5:28 am

Hope in God must be joined to faith in
Him.
That the sinner be justified he must
believe and hope in God.
Faith is the foundation
of hope. If we believe in God and
therefore believe His promises, we naturally
hope to receive that which He has promised.
If we believe that Jesus, the Son of God,
died on the cross to save us from sin, to
make us children of God and heirs of heaven,
we will naturally hope to benefit by this
mercy of God if we do what He demands
of us.
He who wishes to be justified must
therefore believe in God, he must believe in
Jesus, the Son of God, he must believe that
Jesus redeemed us by His death on the
cross, and that God will pardon his sins on
account of the merits of Jesus Christ; he
must believe that God will give him grace
to live a good life and merit the eternal
happiness of heaven. With belief must be
joined the hope of obtaining heaven through
the grace given him by the merits of his
Redeemer.
Faith without hope is nothing.
Of what use is it to me to believe that Jesus
died for me if I do not hope to be saved
through His death?
It is precisely hope
that lifts us up to God and gives us strength
to do His will and obey His commandments.



To be continued...

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