Marius Victorinous claimed to have teached sola fide any truth to that?

Marius Victorinus was a plationist philosopher that converted to Christianity near the end of his life, supposedly his conversation had made a great impact on Augustine. However I have seen people claim he had taught Sola Fide! Do we have an expert in this forum that can find some Catholic commentary on his work? There are many Evangelicals that claimed he taught Sola Fide.

Here is one for example (starts on page 3)


I was under the impression that Sola Fide was a “novelty” created by Martin Luther in the 16th century as an over-reaction :confused:

When Victorinus said “Thus any flesh whatsoever””Jews or those from the Gentiles"”is justified on the basis of faith, not works or observance of the Jewish Law."

Is the “works” he is referring to here works of the Jewish law and saying both works and observations of the Jewish law do not justify or is he splitting up general acts of kindness with Jewish ceremonial laws and saying they both not needed for justification?

Personally I do not have a problem with the quote. I consider it very Pauline in character, and also very Catholic. Catholics believe we are justified by faith, but Catholic belief is that faith is not just an assent, it is an action, it is out-worked, and it is in conjunction with grace and sacraments.

Bottom line is the issue revolves around the term “sola” not the term “fides”. If Gaius Marius Victorinus used the term “sola” in that statement, it would be conceivable for protestants to herald him as a protestant. However I think it is unfair on and even defamation to Gaius Marius Victorinus to be sucked into the protestant “justification of their existence” argument, when quite possibly if he were here on this earth to speak for himself, having heard the protestant argument, and witnessed their theology, he would probably disagree, for Gaius Marius Victorinus was not a secret protestant born in a vacuum.

Reading something through a lens is also not something new.

mmmm … I think you have a point but I really hope for a Catholic understanding of his text, as he was mentioned in the new advent encyclopedia. However even the research paper I mentioned said that Victorinius said the faith of a Christian needs to be founded in love for God and OTHER HUMANS. Does that contradict the idea of faith alone in Christ alone? Also don’t Evangelicals believe that love for other people is a RESULT of salvation not what causes/contributes to it?

It is from his commentary on Galatians. We are not saved by circumcision. Circumcision was introduced in Chapter 17 of Genesis. Abraham was justified in Chapter 15.

I believe the confusion is twofold. The first is “sola” being all that is involved in salvation. The second is “fides” which is often mistaken as being “credo”.

ok i see still it would be nice to see some Catholic commentary on this, its only protestants that talk about this guy, because they are claiming he taught sola fide

The protestant does make the claim, my friend, however one thing you should note about official Catholic teaching and commentary. They generally come from the perspective of the big picture, they do not address every single claim of every single protestant, or muslim, or jw or mormon, or atheist. So while they may address the rule of faith, they will not provide every apologetic answer, but they do provide sufficient thesis to affirm the Catholic Faith.

The real question for you should be whether prior to the protestant reformation, did any Catholic theologians and apologists consider Gaius Marius Victorinus a threat to their Theology. Did he say something profoundly wrong, that would cause contention within the Faith. We know that there was motivation when the protestant statement was brought to the table, and the Catholic Church responded accordingly, issuing official Catholic Statements. They did not however do that to Gaius Marius Victorinus with regard to his Galatians commentary (at least not that I am aware of). Whether he was orthodox or not on other aspects of the Faith I do not know. I do not know enough about him.

here is something I realized

1.Augustine loved this guy
2.Augustine believed that baptism was so necessary for salvation that even infants needed it
3. If Victorinius rejected Augustine’s beliefs about Baptism (remember Baptism is a work in the eyes of evangelicals) why would Augustine admire him?
4. Victorinius did not teach Sola Fide in any meaningful sense

My friend, I am glad you have been able to find an answer to your question. I had my own set of questions, in my search, they were all answered and beyond that even questions I didn’t realize I had. That is why I am now Catholic. May God bless you in your search.

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