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The temporal mission of the Holy Ghost

Or, Reason And Revelation

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This edition was published in by Longmans, Green, and Co. in London, England.

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Cover of: The temporal mission of the Holy Ghost
The temporal mission of the Holy Ghost: or, Reason and revelation
1909, Burns & Oates, Benziger
in English - 6th ed.
Cover of: The temporal mission of the Holy Ghost
Cover of: The temporal mission of the Holy Ghost
Cover of: The temporal mission of the Holy Ghost
Cover of: The temporal mission of the Holy Ghost
Cover of: The Temporal Mission Of The Holy Ghost
Cover of: The temporal mission of the Holy Ghost

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The temporal mission of the Holy Ghost

Or, Reason And Revelation

This edition was published in by Longmans, Green, and Co. in London, England.

Table of Contents

INTRODUCTION. (pp. 1-34.)
Object and method of the work. A Divine Teacher always present. Reason either a disciple or a critic, nationalism true and false. In the former sense it signifies the use of the reason in testing the evidence of a revelation alleged to be divine, or in perceiving the harmony of the Divine Revelation with the human reason. In the latter sense defined to be an abnormal and illegitimate use of the reason. Divided into perfect and imperfect, or fully-developed and incipient. 1. The former assumes reason to be the fountain of all knowledge relating to God and to the soul, and therefore the source, measure, and limit of what is credible in the theology of natural religion, to the exclusion of all supernatural revelation. 2. The latter assumes reason to be the supreme test or judge of the intrinsic credibility of revelation admitted in the main to be supernatural. Both kinds of Rationalism are one in principle : both lower the reason. Incipient Rationalism in the Anglican Church. The Church teaches that Faith is an infused grace which elevates and perfects the reason. Object of the present work to show : 1. That to believe in Revelation is the highest act of the human reason. 2. That to believe in Revelation, whole and perfect, is the perfection of the reason. 3. That to submit to the Voice of the Holy Spirit in the Church is the absolute condition to attain a perfect knowledge of Revelation. 4. That the Divine Witness of the Holy Spirit in the Church anticipates the criticism of the human reason, and refuses to be subject to it. The four bases or motives of Faith are : 1. That it is a violation of reason not to believe in the existence of God. 2. That it is a violation of our moral sense not to believe that God has made Himself known to man. 3. That the Revelation He has given is Christianity. 4. That Christianity is Catholicism. Each of these four truths certain by its own proper evidence, and each also confirmatory of the other. Christianity the summing up and final expression in the Person of Jesus Christ, of all the truths of the natural and supernatural order in Judaism and Paganism. Other religions fragmentary and local. Belief in the Holy Trinity leads to believing in Catholicism. Three Divine Persons: three Divine offices— the Father and Creation ; the Son and Redemption ; the Holy Ghost and the Church. Definition of the Temporal Mission of the HOLY Ghost: The sending, advent, and office of the Holy Ghost through the Incarnate Son, and after the day of Pentecost. The Eternal Procession of the Holy Ghost completes the mystery of the Holy Trinity ad intra; the Temporal Mission of the Holy Ghost completes the revelation of the Holy Trinity ad extra. Testimony of S. Augustine. The Author's retractation of three errors : 1. Of false rule of Faith. 2. Of false theory of unity. 3. Of false view of the position of the Roman Pontiff. Unity of the Church indivisible and singular. Passing away of the so-called reformation.
In the Baptismal Creed the article on the Church is united to the article on the Holy Ghost, to signify that the union between the Holy Ghost and the Church is divinely constituted, indissoluble and eternal. By this union the Church is immutable in its knowledge, discernment, and enunciation of the truth. 1. Proved from HOLY Scripture, 8. John xiv. xvi., Eph. iv., Bom, xii., 1 Cor. xii. 2. Proved by passages from the Fathers, S. Irenjeus, Tbrtullian, S. Augustine, S. Gregory of Nazianzum, S. Cyril of Alexandria, and S. Gregory the Great. Two conclusions follow : 1. The present dispensation that of the Holy Spirit. 2. It differs from His presence and office before the advent of Jesus Christ in many gifts, graces and manifestations, and principally in five ways :
I. The Holy Ghost came before into the world by His universal operations in all mankind, but now He comes through the Incarnate Son by a special and personal presence. Proved from H. Scripture, S. Augustine, and S. Thomas. Explained by Suarez and Petavius.
II. Before the day of Pentecost the Mystical Body of Christ was not complete : the Holy Ghost came to perfect its creation and organization. The Constitution of the Body was deferred until the Head was glorified. 1. Christ, as Head of the Church, is the fountain of all sanctity to His mystical Body. Col. i. 19, Eph. i. 22. S. Gregory the Great and S. Augustine. 2. The sanctification of the Church is effected by the gift of the Holy Ghost. Eph. ii. 22, Bom. v. 5, 1 Cor. iii. 16. S. Athanasius and S. Cyril of Alexandria. 3. The Holy Ghost dwells personally and substantially in the mystical Body, which is the incorporation of those who are sanctified. 4. The members of the mystical Body who are sanctified, partake not only of the created graces, but of a substantial union with the Holy Ghost. 5. The union of the Holy Ghost with the mystical Body, though analogous to the hypostatic union, is not hypostatic ; forasmuch as the human personality of the members of Christ still subsists in this substantial union. References to Pbtayius and Thomassinus.
III. The Holy Ghost came at Pentecost to constitute a union between Himself and the mystical Body that would be absolute and indissoluble. Before the Incarnation He wrought in the souls of men, one by one. His presence, therefore, was conditional, depending on the human will, as it is now in individuals as such; but in the Church His presence depends on the Divine will alone and is therefore perpetual. 1. The union of the Holy Ghost with the Head of the Church, both as God and as Man, is indissoluble. 2. There will always be a mystical Body for that Divine Head, although individuals may fall from it. Three divine and eternal unions, (1.) Of the Head with the members, (2.) Of the members with each other, (3.) Of the Holy Ghost with the Body, constitute the complete organization of the Church. Its endowments are derived from the Divine Person of its Head, and the Divine Person who is its Life. It receives a communication of the perfections of the Holy Ghost. It is imperishable, because He is God ; indivisibly one, because He is numerically one ; holy, because He is the fountain of holiness ; infallible, because He is the Truth. Its members not only called or elected, but aggregated or called into one. The Church, therefore, is a mystical person, not on probation, but the instrument of probation to others.
IV. Before the Incarnation the Holy Ghost wrought invisibly: now by his Temporal Mission He has manifested His presence and His operations by the Visible Church of Jesus Christ. 1. The Church is the evidence of the presence of the Holy Ghost among men, the visible incorporation of His presence: (1.) By its supernatural and world-wide unity. S. Augustine quoted. (2.) By its imperishableness in the midst of the dissolving works of man. (3.) By its immutability in doctrine of faith and morals. 2. The Church is the instrument of the power of the Holy Ghost: (1.) By the perpetuity and diffusion of the light of the Incarnation. (2.) By the perpetuity of sanctifying grace by means of the Seven Sacraments. 3. It manifests for various ends and at various times His miraculous power. 4. It is the organ of His voice. General Summary. — From the indissoluble union of the Holy Ghost flow: 1. The three properties of Unity, Visibleness and Perpetuity; 2. The three endowments, namely; Indefectability in life and duration, Infallibility in teaching, and Authority in governing ; 3. The four notes, namely, Unity, Sanctity, Catholicity, and Apostolicity.
V. Before the Incarnation the Holy Ghost taught and sanctified individuals, but with an intermitted exercise of His visitations ; now He teaches and sanctifies the Body of the Church permanently. Three possibly conceivable Rules of Faith ; 1. A living Judge and Teacher, or the Divine Mind declaring itself through an organ of its own creation. 2. The Scriptures interpreted by the reason of individuals. 3. Scripture and Antiquity. The two last resolvable into one, namely, the human mind judging for itself upon the evidence and contents of revelation. Its refutation. False theory of a Church once undivided and infallible and afterwards divided and fallible. 5. Cyprian and S. Bede quoted. The office of the Holy Ghost as Illuminator consists in the following operations : 1. In the original revelation to the Apostles. 2. In the preservation of what was revealed. 3. In assisting the Church to conceive, with greater fulness, explicitness and clearness, the original truth' in all its relations. 4. In defining that truth in words. 5. In the perpetual enunciation and propositions of the same immutable truth. Be Locis Theologicis : (1.) Voice of the Living Church, (2.) The Holy Scriptures, (3.) Tradition, (4.) The decrees of General Councils, (5.) The definitions and decrees of Sovereign Pontiffs speaking ex cathedra, (6.) The unanimous voice of the Saints, (7.) The consent of Doctors, (8.) The voice of the Fathers, (9.) The authority of Philosophers, (10.) Human History, (11.) Natural Reason.
Two ways of treating this relation : 1. In those who do not believe. 2. In those who do believe. In the former case Reason must, by necessity, ascertain, examine, judge, and estimate the evidence of the fact of a revelation, its motives of credibility and its nature. In the latter case it submits as a disciple to a Divine Teacher. S. Thomas quoted to show the office of reason in regard to revelation ; 1. Faith presupposes the operations of reason, on the motives of credibility for which we believe. 2. Faith is rendered intrinsically credible by reason. 3. Faith is illustrated by reason. 4. Faith is defended by reason against the sophisms of false philosophy. The relations of reason to revelation are principally five :
I. Reason receives Revelation by intellectual apprehension. Analogy of the eye and light Knowledge of God both in Nature and Revelation a gift or infusion to man, not a discovery by logic or research. Reference to Viva. What was revealed by our Lord and the Holy Ghost inherited and sustained by the Church.
II. Reason propagates the truths of Revelation, The Divine Commission to the Apostles. Faith came by hearing.
III. Reason defines the truths of Revelation divinely presented to it. The Creeds, General Councils, Definitions, and the science of Theology.
IV. Reason defends Revelation. 1. Negatively, by showing the nullity of arguments brought against it: 2. positively, by demonstrating its possibility, fitness, necessity, and reality. Sketch of the history of Theology. The ancient Apologies of the early Fathers. The Greek and Latin Fathers. S. John of Damascus, Be Orthodoxd Fide in the eighth century. Lanfranc and S. Anselm in the eleventh. Cur Beus Homo. S. Bernard and Abelard. Peter Lombard, Liber Sententiarum. Albertus Magnus, S. Bonaventura, S. Thomas. Summa Theologica. The Dominican and Jesuit Commentators. The Council of Trent. History of Dogma.
V. Reason transmits Revelation by a scientific treatment and tradition. Theology though not a science propria dicta, may be truly and correctly so described. The definition of Science in Scholastic Philosophy taken from Aristotle. The sense in which Theology is a Science. Opinions of S. Thomas, Cajetan, Vasquez, and Gregory of Valentia. Fourteen General Conclusions stated as propositions.
Object of this chapter to trace an outline of the history of the Doctrine of Inspiration.
I. In every century there have been objectors, gainsayers and unbelievers, from Cerinthus, Marcion, and Faustus the Manichsean, to Luther, Spinoza, Paine, and modern rationalists.
II. Doctrine of Inspiration in the Church of England. References to Hooker, Whitby, and Bish Of Burnet. Various modern opinions. The Essays and Reviews.
III. The Catholic Doctrine of Inspiration. Five points of faith.
1. That the writings of the Prophets and Apostles are Holy Scripture.
2. That God is the Author of the Sacred Books. 3. That the Sacred Books are so many in number and are such by name. 4. That these books in their integrity are to be held as sacred and canonical. 5. That the Latin version called the Vulgate is authentic.
First period of simple faith, — The Fathers both of the East and West extend the Inspiration of the Holy Ghost to the whole of Scripture, both to its substance and to its form. Proved from S. Ibbnjeus, S. Macarius, S. Chrysostom, S. Basil, S. Gregory of Nazianzum and S. John OF Damascus. Also from S. Augustine, S. Gregory the Great, and S. Ambrose.Second period of analysis as to the nature and limits of Inspiration. — Two schools of opinion.
1. Every particle and word of the Canonical books was written by the dictation of the Holy Spirit. Tostatus. Estius. Faculties of Louvain and Douai, Melchior Canus, Banez, and the Dominican Theologians generally.
2. The whole matter of Holy Scripture was written by the assistance of the Holy Spirit, but not the whole form dictated by Him. Bellarmine, the Jesuit Theologians, and the majority of recent writers on the subject. Opinions of Luther and Erasmus. Discussion caused by the propositions of Lessius and Hamel. P. Simon and Holden. Definition of Inspiration, Revelation, Suggestion, and Assistance.
Inspiration includes: 1. The impulse to put in writing the matter which God wills. 2. The suggestion of the matter to be written. 3. The assistance which excludes liability to error. Theologia Wirceburgensis. Statement of supposed difficulties. Reply to objections gathered from S. Jerome. In what sense the Vulgate is authentic. Whensoever the text can be undoubtedly established, the supposition of error as to the contents of that text cannot be admitted. Wheresoever the text may be uncertain, in those parts error may be present — this would be an error of transcription or translation. 1. The Holy Scripture does not contain a revelation of the physical sciences. 2. No system of chronology is laid down in the Sacred Books. 3. Historical narratives may appear incredible and yet be true. S. Augustine quoted.
Christianity neither derived from Scripture, nor dependent upon it. What the Incarnate Son was to the Scriptures of the Old Testament, that the Holy Ghost, servatd proportione, is to the Scriptures of the New. England has hitherto preserved the belief that Christianity is a Divine Revelation, and that the Holy Scripture is an inspired Book. Fruits of the Reformation in other countries. In the Catholic Church the relations of the Holy Ghost to the interpretation of Scripture are :
I. The Revelation of the Spirit of God was given, preached, and believed before the New Testament existed. S. Ireneus quoted.
II. This Revelation was also divinely recorded before the New Testament Scriptures were written. 1. Upon the minds of pastors and people. 2. In the Seven Sacraments. 3. In the visible worship of the Church. 4. In the early creeds. Table of the dates of the Books of the New Testament.
III. The Science of. God, incorporated in the Church, is the true key to the interpretation of Scripture. The unvarying witness of the Catholic Faith contrasted with the divers interpretations of Protestant sects.
IV. The Church is the guardian both of the Faith and of the Scriptures. It received both from its Divine Head. It alone witnesses to both : 1. With a human and historical testimony. 2. With a divine and supernatural testimony.
V. The Church is not only the interpretation, but the interpreter of Holy Scripture. Refutation of the Protestant theory of private interpretation. How the Divine Scriptures become human. S. Jerome quoted. Scripture abused by heretics. S. Augustine and Vincent of Lerins quoted. Anecdote of Henry III. of England and S. Louis of France. Answer to two accusations brought against the Church: 1. That it supersedes to so great an extent the use of Scripture in the devotions of the people ; and, 2. That it enunciates its doctrines in an arbitrary and dogmatic way, regardless of the facts of Christian antiquity and history. In the Church alone the Scriptures retain their whole and perfect meaning. Examples given. The Church has a profound sense of their sacredness. Illustrations from the lives of S. Paulinus, S. Edmund, and S. Charles.
Christianity has been preserved pure. Analogy between the Church in Rome in the fourth century and in England in the present. Signs of the dissolution of the various forms of Protestantism. The real question between the Catholic Church and all Christian bodies separated from it — not one of detail but of principle. Charge of corruption brought against Catholic doctrines. God alone can reform His Church, The 1 Unction from the Holy One' always present to preserve the Faith. Proof from 1 S. John ii. drawn out in full.
As a consequence of this truth it follows :
I. All the doctrines of the Church to this day are incorrupt.
II. They are also incorruptible.
III. They are also immutable. Change of growth different from that of decay. Sense in which the doctrines of the Church are said to grow; e.g. the dogmas of the Holy Trinity, of the Incarnation, of the Blessed Eucharist, and of the Immaculate Conception. In Protestantism the doctrines of Christianity have suffered the change of decay.
IV. The doctrines of the Church are always primitive. The Church ever ancient and ever new.
V. They are also transcendent because divine. In the supernatural order, Faith must come before understanding. S. Augustine quoted. Credo quia impossibile. The Holy Spirit is the Author and Guardian of the Tradition of Christian Truth. He diffuses the light by which it is known, and presides over the selection of the terms in which it is defined and enumerated. Objection against Dogmatism, — The Theology of the Nineteenth Century should be moral and spiritual. Answer to objection. Analogy of philosophical truths. Dogmatic Theology consists in the scientific arrangement of the primary and secondary orders of Christian truth. A dogma is the intellectual conception and verbal expression of a divine truth. Consequently it cannot essentially change. Answer to objection that Dogmatic Theology is barren and lifeless. Theology divided into Dogmatic, Moral, Ascetical, and Mystical. Their mutual relations. Use made of Catholic sources by Protestant writers. Devotions of the Church founded on its doctrines : e.g. The Blessed Sacrament, The Sacred Heart, The Passion, etc. The Spiritual Exercises of S. Ignatius. Summary and Conclusion.
APPENDIX, (pp 249-277.)

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