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Intellect and grace in Augustine of Hippo

Lossl, Josef 2013. Intellect and grace in Augustine of Hippo. Journal for Late Antique Religion and Culture 7 , pp. 15-25. 10.18573/j.2013.10315

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Abstract

In 1964 Rudolph Lorenz published an article in the Zeitschrift für Kirchengeschichte entitled “Gnade und Erkenntnis bei Augustinus”, in which he discussed links between Augustine’s concepts of intellect and grace and possible implications with regard to Augustine’s teachings on Predestination and Original Sin. This paper takes up some of Lorenz’s points and tries to develop them further. It concludes that one of the reasons why Augustine was so adamant in defending these controversial doctrines and why he was unable to share the concerns of contemporaries regarding their controversial nature was the fact that he understood them in the context of his intellectualist framework. For him this made them “comprehensible”. At the same time, not framing the human intellectual endeavour in the context of a teaching on grace would have meant for Augustine a depressing reduction of the most essential and fulfilling form of human activity to a mere natural process, while in his view it originated gratuitously in God and linked each human being to eternal salvation in Christ and communion with God.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: History, Archaeology and Religion
Publisher: Cardiff University
ISSN: 1754-517X
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Last Modified: 05 Dec 2017 11:51
URI: http://orca-mwe.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/78288

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