Czy Doktor anielski nie doceniał Chrystusa?
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We współczesnej teologicznej debacie nie powinno zabraknąć głosu św. Tomasza. Dotyczy to także dyskusji o podejściu do tajemnicy Chrystusa i historii zbawienia. Wbrew pozorom, na podstawie których sądzi się czasami jego dzieło, propozycja Doktora powszechnego jest wciąż w tej dziedzinie ważnym głosem i źródłem inspiracji.
“Did the Angelic Doctor Underestimate Christ?” examines the role of Christology in the thought of Thomas Aquinas. At the end of the Summa Theologica, Aquinas offers a discussion of the Incarnation in which he tends toward the view that Christ would not have taken human form had man not sinned. This position gives rise to the suspicion that the Dominican treated the Incarnation too lightly; that he understood it instrumentally, merely as a means to resolve the “problem” of sin. The author shows that the position accorded to the discussion of Christ in Aquinas’s work comes out of St. Thomas’ approach to Salvation History as a whole. The style of reasoning known as ex convenientia (“from suitability”), common among medieval theologians, permitted them to regard their interpretations of Salvation History as belonging to scientia in the Aristotelian sense while also allowing them to produce a balanced, two-sided analysis of every event. On the one hand, the Incarnation was deemed not absolutely necessary, since a transcendent God cannot be constrained by any one scenario. On the other hand, it was considered consistent with the logic of the divine design of love for Christ to have assumed a human nature. This bilateral analysis enabled theologians to admire the Incarnation as an act performed by God out of love, in freedom. The influence of G.F. Hegel’s metaphysics has caused the suggestion that the Incarnation was not absolutely necessary to appear suspect. Theologians inspired by the synthesis of the sage from Berlin tend to see the Incarnation as part of a necessary process. The metaphysical perspective they occupy – different from that of Aquinas – usually yields a distorted view of the medieval master. Yet St. Thomas’ approach to Salvation History, in which respect for God’s transcendence and appreciation for divine freedom each have a place, remains the more interesting and well-balanced proposition and should have a prominent voice in contemporary discussions.
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