Daniel Richards—The Role of Doctrine in Inspiring Believers to Moral Greatness

Posted by Kendall Harmon

St. Robert Bellarmine proposed as a mark of the true Church the efficacy of doctrine in inspiring believers to moral greatness. That this should be so is due to the hypostatic nature of the Church, which is the body of Christ. Human and divine, it is necessary that members of the Church, if they are to live in full unity with God and one another, be transformed through that same mode of existence, inflating neither at the expense of the other. In order to demonstrate this essential coexistence of nature and grace in the life of the Church, and the life of the believer, it must be shown that doctrine is necessary for salvation, not superfluous, but essential to the Church’s mission given by Christ. Secondly, it must also be shown that, of itself, doctrine is inefficacious without the subjective element of faith that makes it salvific. From the proper delineation of doctrine established by the above, the role of the Church in proposing doctrine for belief becomes clear. Finally, the dynamic of faith and action comes forth, by which the believer is indeed inspired to moral greatness.

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Filed under: * Christian Life / Church Life* Religion News & CommentaryOther ChurchesRoman Catholic* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

Posted October 15, 2013 at 6:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]
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