Catholic pedestination


#1

I just recently learned through my studies of the council of trent that we believe in predesdination. I researched it, and cannot for the life of me see the difference in the Catholic dogma and the Calvinist belief. Could some explain this to me in simple terms. Thanks


#2

Hi! There have been a few discussions about this lately. Please search out the threads called “predestination” and “salvation controversy”. You could also read the newadvent.org article about predestination (though it’s quite long).


#3

And for the benefit of anyone quickly scanning this thread that does not want to read the sources cited, the Catholic Church does NOT teach predestination.


#4

[quote=awalt]And for the benefit of anyone quickly scanning this thread that does not want to read the sources cited, the Catholic Church does NOT teach predestination.
[/quote]

Maybe not the way Calvinist teach it. But I’m NOT stupid. I read Ludwig Otts The fundamentals of Catholic Dogma, also Thomas Aquinas Teaches it and Augustine. And the Council of Trent has it as a Dogma of the Church which I might remind you is binding. My problem is its worded in such a way I can’t get a could grasp on it. But it is a dogma of the Church if you say it is not the burden of proof lays upon you.


#5

The way I explained it to a Presbyterian friend (and correct me if I was wrong) is that we Catholics believe that although God already knows in advance what we’re going to do, as He’s outside of time, we have free will. God doesn’t make us do one thing or the other, although he might call us to a particular choice it’s still pretty much up to us. God knows what we will choose. From what I understand, the Calvinist view is that God chose ahead of time who would be saved and who would be damned, no matter what the elect are going to do during life, no matter what the damned are going to do during life.

My friend, interestingly enough, said that although she calls herself Calvinist, she adheres to the Catholic idea here because it makes more sense.

-ACEGC


#6

[quote=dbrown]Maybe not the way Calvinist teach it. But I’m NOT stupid. I read Ludwig Otts The fundamentals of Catholic Dogma, also Thomas Aquinas Teaches it and Augustine. And the Council of Trent has it as a Dogma of the Church which I might remind you is binding. My problem is its worded in such a way I can’t get a could grasp on it. But it is a dogma of the Church if you say it is not the burden of proof lays upon you.
[/quote]

Can you point me to site so that I can read the wording of the dogma you refer to. I’ve been searching but can’t find it.


#7

[quote=thistle]Can you point me to site so that I can read the wording of the dogma you refer to. I’ve been searching but can’t find it.
[/quote]

The Catholic Encyclopedea has a long article on it but the first part which I’ve extracted seems to summarise it:

**Theology restricts the term to those Divine decrees which have reference to the supernatural end of rational beings, especially of man. Considering that not all men reach their supernatural end in heaven, but that many are eternally lost through their own fault, there must exist a twofold predestination: (a) one to heaven for all those who die in the state of grace; (b) one to the pains of hell for all those who depart in sin or under God’s displeasure. However, according to present usages to which we shall adhere in the course of the article, it is better to call the latter decree the Divine “reprobation”, so that the term predestination is reserved for the Divine decree of the happiness of the elect. **

It seems to me that predestination does not mean God has chosen a certain number to be saved but is saying everyone is intended to be saved unless they choose to reject him and go to Hell. He of course knows who has chosen to love him, remain in a state of grace and be saved.


#8

Hi

I am having trouble with this too - in a way…I’ll put my understanding here, and am ready to be corrected :smiley:

Jesus said - not all who say ‘Lord, Lord’ will be saved, but only those who do the will of my Father in heaven. Also, ‘The luke warm I will spew out of my mouth’. This means to me, that we can be church going, sacrament recieving Christians - and still be damned because we are not following the will of the Father. We can be following the leading of the spirit so far as ‘casting out demons’ and ‘healing the sick’ are concerned - but not be following the will of God in the purpose of our life, as it relates to our vocation, or our conversion (Spiritual meaning, not ‘Church type’ meaning)

We are pre-destined to certain vocational callings, and ignoring this is ignoring the will of the father - although he will use us to His own ends - and I suppose hope that we change our minds and hearts to conform to His - but the choice there is ultimately our own - to our eternal reward…or punishment. We must be in full submission - or at least have the intent of being such - in order to recieve salvation.

What I get out of all of this - is that our reward is already assured, ‘Those He has known He has called, those He has called He has sanctified/Glorified’ (Paraphrased) all we need do is work it out with fear and trembling…because that is Gods will for us, and ignoring that = damnation. Everything is already accomplished - we need to just do our part in conversion, following the Spirit - and all will be well.

I’m NOT sure how that applies to Judas, Pharao, and others in history…maybe that is where the verse ‘some vessels are made for destruction’ comes in? Sacrifice one for the sake of many? Are they sacrificed? My feeble human mind freezes up with these questions… :confused:

But that is my understanding of things…am I close?

Peace

John


#9

[quote=edward_george]The way I explained it to a Presbyterian friend (and correct me if I was wrong) is that we Catholics believe that although God already knows in advance what we’re going to do, as He’s outside of time, we have free will. God doesn’t make us do one thing or the other, although he might call us to a particular choice it’s still pretty much up to us. God knows what we will choose. From what I understand, the Calvinist view is that God chose ahead of time who would be saved and who would be damned, no matter what the elect are going to do during life, no matter what the damned are going to do during life.

My friend, interestingly enough, said that although she calls herself Calvinist, she adheres to the Catholic idea here because it makes more sense.

-ACEGC
[/quote]

This post with the exception of ‘a particular choice is pretty much up to us’ is a very good and brief description of a teaching of the Church that is hard to understand for some as they confuse Fatalism which is in opposition to free will with a Divine Omniscient Being who is able to prevent chaos and write the story of Creation in broad terms and in particulars that do NOT eliminate or FORCE choices for individuals. Our decisions are freely, individually, made and all exists for the choosing of choices we do not make so that we cannot claim our choices were impaired in any way. Our choices govern our Eternal Reward. We choose.
We must. For how else can God reward us? He could not, in all fairness, reward Himself for making our choices for us. He does, however, provide uncountable and broad suggestions as to which choices are better than others for each one of us before we choose.


#10

[quote=awalt]And for the benefit of anyone quickly scanning this thread that does not want to read the sources cited, the Catholic Church does NOT teach predestination.
[/quote]

It is more accurate to say that the Catholic Church does not teach the Calvinistic error of so-called double-predestination, that is, that while God destines certain people for heaven, he does NOT destine anyone for hell, all the while in some mysterious way, respecting our free will.

It’s a little involved to explain here but I would recommend this article by Catholic Answers staff apologist Jimmy Akin

Tiptoe Through TULIP
catholic.com/thisrock/1993/9309fea1.asp

as well as the full treatment in his indispensible book “The Salvation Controversy” available in the on-line Catholic Answers bookstore.
shop.catholic.com/cgi-local/SoftCart.exe/online-store/scstore/p-CB258.html?L+scstore+wymn0210ff540954+1137256204


#11

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