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March 24, 1961     The Observer
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PAGE 12 THE OBSERVER FRIDAY, MARCH 24, 1961 THEOLOGY FOR EVERY MAN S 0 The following commentary on the natural character of Our everything that pertains to the Incarnation. As the Head oflway as He is in His divine nature. Nevertheless, by reason Lord was prepared at St. John's Seminary Brighton, Mass It is all men and angels, Christ is their Supreme Judge, His humanlof the union of his human nature with His divine nature in reprinted ]ram the Boston Pilot. knowledge must therefore extend to all the details of theirlthe Person of the Word, His human nature shared in the es- , ~ created activity, past, present and future. ~sential indefectibility of His Divine Nature. Thus it can be Even those who deny the Divinity of Christ generally regard,[~rulyI s)Id that Christ Himself was incapable of committing ~ . t "s only because He was completely free of sin that it tteh; Mt~eO~Ga~l:: a: :h:wgnre:t~IsOfam:naThHi~a~r:dsCharae unE:::se~haMans tenme~eiaOcr~ ~:t~te ?sOWS e~e~j~ingT::O:ut22elwas possible for Him to undertake to free men from their sins. ~r ~ * . soul of Christ possesses all the knowledge that other souls pos-J ~ ~ Q What are the original" meanings of the sacrea" names oz sess when they reach the beatific vision. His 'knowledge, there-I It follows that the power to commit sin in human beings does Jesus' and Christ~ ,fare' is essentially an refused knowledge. Beyond this, how-lnot, pertain to the perfection of their human nature. It is rather . . Jever, ~nrist nan an acqulrea xnowleage similar to our own.]a defect of human nature, consequent upon the weakness w~chTh: i[tudnJebS::edlSo:htheL~brfe r%::d ajoGshe:? :h;c~ In this knowledge he made real and measurable progress, andJbrought about by original sin. The weakness which leads men . o he developed and combined the data of experience in the sameJinto sin must not, therefore, be regarded as pertaining essential- means uenovan is salvation. ~ne name occurs ~requentiy in wa-- as other men q-- to hum-n n "~ :~ y a aLure, m.~ougn me power oi committing sin can Old Testament history. It was the name of the author of the ~ -k 9 [never be naturall- excluded in a creature wh~*- ~ *:~,-- BOok of Ecclesiasticus. It was borne bv one of Christ's ances- " |. J '~" ~ ~""~"Y tars mentioned in the Gospel of St Luke (3 29/ and also by In t e past there was some question among theologians on[ P g , ~ h imperfect. In men we find born me ower of eommlttin sin " ' " ~ h" " wmcn IS lmplieu in meir very nature and the ositive tendenc one of the companions of St. Paul mentioned in the Epistle to t is point. Some felt that any progress from ignorance to know-it P . . . Y lede was unworth of the So "~o-~ To-~ - ~o :./ wares sin, wnlcn IS one oI me eiIects oi original sin In [healCs.:l cSoS~anSct~J' ;~!h tThh: :::dkwfh~:h m featnh: tonah:al,Je~u~ is goemmonly held ~at, as man? i~wa~ Unece~s~arYy th;tV~hri;~lChsieSj ~hetae:tetCYeto::~ds sin wasexcluded because He pos- this is not the primitive meaning of the term. The Gospels would im'dhaveacquiredwouldkn wledge' and that whatever imperfection this ing into Sin was excluded it-s-per!ecti' n'the p ssibility f fall- tell us that this name was imposed on Our Lord by God s " p y d pertain essentially to the nature of the vecause ms human nature was as- express command, to indicate that the Child Who was born Blessed T init.humanitYrWhieh was assumed by the Second Person of the sumea oy tne ~'erson of the worn. was destined to save His people from their sins. Thus from ss " " y. This would certainly seem to be suggested in * * 4r i the text of St Luke (2, 52) that Jesus grew m wisdom age the earl'est days' the name Jesus has taken on the meaning " " , of Savior. and, grace. The Word Christ is the Greek equivalent of the Hebrew word -k ~ Messiah, which means anointed. According to the Old Law, More Recently, certain theolo~ans, stressing unduly the hu- priests and prophets were to be anointed for their respective man side of the knowledge of Christ, have made statements offices. Hence for centuries the Jews had referred to their that would seem to deny to Him as man the infused knowledge expected deliveer as the Anointed, or the Messias. The term of the beautific vision. The Holy Office issued a warning Christ was thus a title rather than a proper name. The Gospel against this tendency in an instruction of 1918, which was re- writers recognize this in referring to Jesus as the Christ. Only iterated in the following words of the Encyclical Letter 'Mystici after the Resurrection were the two names combined into a Carports' of Pope Plus XII; "All the treasures of wisdom and proper name. At this point, the Greeks and the Romans, not knowledge are in Christ abundantly. The knowledge which understanding the Old Testament origins of the word Christ, is called vision is possessed with clarity and comprehensive- confused it with another word Chrestus, meaning excellent, ness, similar to the celestial knowledge found in the saints in The word Chrestus is used in the First Epistle of St. Peter heaven." (2, 3). Later Christian writers, knowing of the'confusion be- Beyond the knowledge of vision, howeverl Christ had an in- tween the two names, called attention to it. In any event, the hate and infused knowledge that embraced all things. This latter use of the definite article before the name Christ and the later knowledge unlike the knowledge of the beatific vision, pertain- fusion of the names into a single proper name shows that the ed essentially to the humanity of Christ. It is this knowledge Christians identified Our Lord as the promised Messias of the I that Christ possessed as a priest, embracing all the sins of men Jews. land their human misery. The acquired knowledge of Christ Q. HOW DO THEOLOGIANS EXPLAIN THE KNOWLEDGE could not have had this universal extension; the knowledge of OF CHRIS~ AS MAN? the beatific vision, while including all things, would not present A. Because Christ was God as weft as man, He possessedthem formally as motives for the satisfactory activity of Christ's both the knowledge of God, infinite and all-embracing, and priesthood. the knowledge of man, which must be considered as a perfec- -k ~r "Jr lion of human nature. As man, Christ our Lord, unlike other Q. WAS CHRIST IN HIS HUMAN KNOWLEDGE, AWARE men, was not only in the way of progress which leads to the THAT HE WAS THE SON OF GOD? vision of God, but was actually in possession of the vision of A. Theologians are pratically unanimous in answering this God, which other men attain only at the end of their lives, question in the affirmative. Even in His human knowledge, The object of Christ's knowledge as man cannot be infinite, since the human nature to which it pertains is itself a crea- ture of God. Nevertheless, the human knowledge which Christ possesses certainly includes as one of its secondarY objects I (Continued from page 8) ool Christ had intuitive awareness of His divine personality. To explain how this is properly human knowledge, and not the knowledge of Christ as God, is not easy. On the one hand, even as human knowledge, it requires supernatural origin and sup- port; it could not arise entirely in the human experience of Christ. On the other hand, it must be, essentially, the human knowledge of Christ. Even in the knowledge of the beautific vision, Christ did not see the divine essence in the same way i as do the saints in heaven. In Christ's soul the beatific vision l is consciousness of his own divine personality. It is not just a matter of the soul of Christ knowing the Word, the former being the subject knowing, the latter, the object known. More rick's Day was dress up day ed following the game to t h at Marian. As was expected the precisely, it is the Word knowing Himself, in His divine per- winners, colGr green showed up in every-lsonality. The Word is conscious of Himself, not of something In another corner of the thing f r o m locks of hair to distinct from Himself. " , letic department, the ping-pongshu~.^-- i Theologians. discuss, at length the further implications, of this tournament honored students Tpomt, and are not in agreement on many details. Fundamental to zne rater mural basketball scu slon howev r h from each class. T h e senio2 -ame. .'. -. I the entire di s ',e ~ is t e unity of the personality winner was Carol Krantz, jun- g s started this w e e k atlof Christ. In Christ there are two natures, the nature of God tar champ Micki Hornburg, Marian. The inter-class teamsiand the nature of man; but the two are united in the Person sophomore winner Heather Die- will play each other until a 11 of the Word. There are not two Christs; there is but one. Bohr.ter' and freshman Hosemarie but the top three piaces a r e eliminated. I Q. HOW DO WE PROVE THAT CHRIST, IN HIS HUMAN The members of M.A.A Ha- In the near future the Student I NATURE, WAS NOT ONLY SINLESS, BUT INCAPABLE OF donna Athletic Association, are Council is planning to featuret COMMITTING SIN? now working on the 300 points a special courtesy program tol A. When we say that Christ was sinless, we mean that He which will enable to qualify for promote more courtesy aroundlnever committed an actual sin, and that He was completely their lette; at the end of t h e Marian. The date set for t h e incapable of committing sin In His human nature Christ was year. These points are gather- program is April 10-14. not free from the possibilit'y of committing sin in the same ed from many activities. Some of these include team sports, in- dividual sports, grades, a n d health or g o o d grooming re- ports. MARIAN By Michael Meyer Builders o] Fine Institutions Since 1925 Friday, March 17, St. Pat- Day of Prayer SPRING GROVE-- Forty4wo high school students from this area attended the annual day of recollection at St. Peter Monday, March 20, sponsored by the Catholic Youht council of that parish. The exercises were led by Father Henry, O.S.B, of St. Benet abbey with particular consideration given to vocations. Dinner was serv- ed by the Christian Mothers sodality. 100 Borden Street--McHenry, Illinois t Patronize Member o/Associated General Contractors oI America I Financial III II 3 bedr ffwood paneled family I! I " I I II III I THE STATE BANK III III -- fun basement. II I . OF Ill o -: o !1' We once. ill I ~U~:~L IFI " T:22 2o, III SENKEI. BROS. BLDG. CORP. III I L I// PHILGAS" III 3 UBUR. ROCKFORD III I .oo. I]1 ;i,;,;';';7;,I 10FF. W4-7885 MODEL TR 7-2046 I1, Member F.D.I.C. Ill PROPHETSTOWN III I i Ill OP Dubuque Ia.--608 Main St. Clinton, Ia.--222 6th Ave. S. Rockford--105 North Main St. Dispensing Glasses Prescribed by Dr. H. Coren---Optometrlst Rockford--Rockford Plaza Dispensing Glosses Prescribed by Dr. H. Portoll--Optometrist Aurora--6 N. Broadway Dispensing Glasses Prescribed by Dr. Wm. Lindley--Optometrlst Dixon---110 East First St. Dispensing Glasses Prescribed by Dr. B. Rubln---Optometrist Sterling---21 W. 3rd St. Dispensing Glasses Prescribed by Dr. R. Cobb, Dr. N. L. St. Germain---Optometrists Elgin--121 S. Grove Purchase Program. For Everyone! "A" Pagel's Rental Purchase Plan Pagel's FHA New Home Plan Pagel's Trade In Plan 9r Pagel's 10% Down Plan Pagel's Work Credit Plan Almost Anyone Can Buy a Home New Homes and Apartments Now Available to Compare! Construction Co. 536 Windsor Rd. Rockford, IlL Call TR 7-7804 Today Dispensing Glosses Prescribed by Dr. H. Mall--Optometrist Q. WHAT CONCLUSIONS HA V E THE THEOLOGIANS DRAWN AS TO THE NATURAL CHARACTER OF OUR LORD? L A. The Gospels do not present any clearly defined picture of the human character of Our Lord. It is not surprising that ]many different and mutually exclusive interpretations of the character of Christ have been presented. Some have called Him a fanatic; others have represented Him as an idealistic dreamer. From a more favorable point of view, we may dis- tir~guish two general types of character which have been ascrib- ed to Our Lord. Some emphasize the ascetic detachment from the world; others, his love of goodness and truth. Some think of Him prinicipally in His sufferings; others see rather the joy and peace which radiate from His human personality. All these elements are consistent in a Character which, from a natur- al point of view, was truly extraordinary and unique. We might single out certain qualities which seem to pertain to the human side of Christ in a special way and to describe His human character in its general outlines. He was strong, first of all, in His manner of life and in His relations with His fellow men. He shows no indication of weakness or sentimental attraction. Nor does He manifest indecision or uncertainty in any situation in which His character is put to the test. He does not argue or defend Himself; He speaks always as one who hasI authority, and who is sure of the principles which guide His actions. He is always a leader of men; He never finds it neces- sary to yield to the superior judgment of any other human being. Again, We note in Our Lord's natural character a condition of complete stability. There was always perfect balance be- tween His feelings and His reason. His Body is the instrument by which He renders obedience to the Will of His Father. His emotions are free of any suggestion of dissociation from rea- sonable control. Because of this psychological equilibrium, we find in Our Lord a perfect and imperturbable peace. His teach- ings reflect this peace of soul. He preaches respect for the law of His people; but He integrates the precepts of the law with the higher law of love. He finds the highest expression of hu- man idealism in self sacrifice, the most noble love of self in the service of others; the most satisfying realism in ~he ideals which only the strong can pursue. A third essential element which enters into the character of Christ makes it humanly attractive. It is the graciousness which does away with all harshness and crudity of expression. He is kindly and self-effacing. He sympathizes with all classes, both rich and poor. He is at home with the learned and the ignorant, the happy and the sad. On the one hand, he warns the Pharisees that their attitude is hypocritical; on the lather hand, He exhorts his followers to become as little ehi dren. We find something in Christ which we look ~or in vain in nat- urally good men, such as Plato and Aristotle. He treats the publicans as His friends; He does not hesitate to preach to little children of the Kingdom of God. He chooses humble and ob- scure men as the foundations of His Church; He trains them to be the light of the world and the salt of the earth. He finds Peter a vacillating man; He forms within him a character upoIL which he can build His Church. He is kind and forgiving eve~ in regard to the Apostle who fell from His grace. His graciousness is also evident in the manner of His teach- ing. He uses the simplest forms of nature for the purposes of illustration; He combines depth of meaning with simplieity of expression. He finds ready and kindly answers both for the doubts of His disciples and the subtle snares of His enemies. In the light of faith we see the natural character of Jesus in combination with the infinite dignity of the Son of God. He shows His love for man by a life of poverty, labor and hard- ship that could find its explanation in no merely natural mo- tivation. Throughout His public ministry He spent Himself for men in ways that would defy the laws of merely human pru- dence. His boundless compassion for human weakness and in- firmity goes beyond the limits of merely natural patience. His influence on sini~ers could not be ascribed to any merely natural attractiveness of m~nner or to any merely natural persuasive- ness. His love for the sinner, portrayed in the parable of the Prodigal Son, could never have been: contained within the limits of any soul of merely natural virtue. It was His' character as it revealed itself supernaturally that lends credence of His claim to be the Son of God. We may ad- mire His natural goodness, and perhaps we find in what we know of Him naturally the strongest immediate source of our imitation. But it is His character as we see it in the light of his subsequent revelation of the secr.ets of His Father that we find reason to accept His assertion that He was divine as well as human and that His haman nature and His divinity were united within His Divine Person. Devotion to the Sacred Humanity of Christ has always been powerful in its effects. We are drawn to God through what we see of Christ Who was God as well as man. We find God ia Him who was so much like ourselves, yet so much more noble than we could possibly be. We tend towards God as our last end because we find in Him the Way, the Truth and the Life. THANKS FOR YOUR KIND RESPONSE TO OUR ADVER. 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