Why do some people receive the gift of faith and not others?
#65
(11-30-2011, 09:12 PM)Aragon Wrote: Melkite and Cgraye,

You're saying that God offers the grace necessary to everyone but some choose to reject it? Does this mean that those who accept it received an extra grace that those who rejected it didn't? What about those who just have no thought of religion to begin with, and so they can't make a conscious decision to reject God's grace. The idea of religiosity just never occurs to them in the first place.

Start with the base of free will.  God gave us free will because he wants us to love him, and love him truly, not just as robots that are programmed to love him.  In order for us to truly love him, it has to be our choice that is at least in part free from divine intervention.  Contrary to the Augustinian view, God allowing this freedom and withholding his own action does not compromise his sovereignty.  He may give one person more grace that influences them more in the direction of choosing God than others, but ultimately there is at least one point where God withdraws his hand and allows the choice to be freely, completely, man's.  As cgraye mentioned, an eternity in terrible torment would be completely unjust if the person a) was conceived into a state of damnation they had no control over, b) cannot possibly escape their fate without the assistance of God and c) God refuses to grant them the only assistance that can help them escape their fate, as the Thomists, Jansenists and Calvinists believe.  From this perspective, Thomist predestination is irreconcilable with orthodox Christianity.

As for people who have no religion, I'm not sure I believe there is no one who doesn't have at least some sense of religiosity.  Even in a completely atheistic environment, secular humanism would develop which is in a sense a type of religion.  All people have the choice to accept or reject God's grace within whichever degree of religiosity they are cognizant of.
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Re: Why do some people receive the gift of faith and not others? - by Melkite - 12-01-2011, 01:39 AM



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