Epistle of Twenty-second Sunday After Pentecost

Philippians 1:6-11

Brethren, we are confident of this very thing, that He Who hath begun a good work in you, will perfect it unto the day of Christ Jesus. As it is meet for me to think this for you all: for that I have you in my heart and that, in my bands, and in the defense and confirmation of the Gospel, you are all partakers of my joy. For God is my witness, how I long after you all in the bowels of Jesus Christ. And this I pray, that your charity may more and more abound in knowledge and in all understanding that you may approve the better things, that you may be sincere and without offense unto the day of Christ, filled with the fruits of ju stice, through Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God

Haydock

Verse 7. In the defence, &c. being then a prisoner, waiting for his trial; and the defence he could make for himself, and the sentence of the judge. Wi.

Verse 9. That your charity, &c. It is worthy of remark, that S. Paul does not beg that the Philippians may enjoy temporal blessings, but that they may be rewarded with an increase of spiritual favours; (Cal.) and as he remarks in the succeeding verses, that they may be filled with the fruits of justice.

Denzinger

178: Original Sin, Grace, Predestination

COUNCIL OF ORANGE II 529
Confirmed by Boniface II
(against the Semipelagians)

Can. 5. If anyone says, that just as the increase [of faith] so also the beginning of faith and the very desire of credulity, by which we believe in Him who justifies the impious, and (by which) we arrive at the regeneration of holy baptism (is) not through the gift of grace, that is, through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit reforming our will from infidelity to faith, from impiety to piety, but is naturally in us, he is proved (to be) antagonistic to the doctrine of the Apostles, since blessed Paul says:We trust, that he who begins a good work in us, will perfect it unto the day of Christ Jesus [Phil. 1:6]; and the following: It was given to you for Christ not only that you may believe in Him, but also, that you may suffer for Him [Phil. 1:29]; and: By grace you are made safe through faith, and this not of yo urselves; for it is the gift of God [Eph. 2:8]. For those who say that faith, by which we believe in God, is natural, declare that all those who are alien to the Church of Christ are in a measure faithful [cf. St. Augustine].

199: Original Sin, Grace, Predestination

COUNCIL OF ORANGE II 529
Confirmed by Boniface II
(against the Semipelagians)

And thus according to the statements of the Holy Scriptures written above, or the explanations of the ancient Fathers, God being propitious, we ought to proclaim and to believe that through the sin of the first man free will was so changed and so weakened that afterwards no one could either love God as he ought, or believe in God, or perform what is good on account of God, unless the grace of divine mercy reached him first. Therefore, we believe that in the [case of] the just Abel, and Noah and Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, and all the multitude of the ancient saints that illustrious faith which the Apostle Paul proclaims in their praise [Heb. 11], was conferred not by tile good of nature, which had been given before in [the case of] Adam, but through the grace of God. Even after the coming of the Lord we know and likewise believe that this grace was not held in the free will of all who desired to be baptized, but was bestowed by the bounty of Christ, according to what has already been said often, and Paul the Apostle declares: It has been given to you for Christ, not only, that you may believe in him, but also that you may suffer for him [Phil. 1:29]; and this: God, who has begun a good work in you, will perfect it even to the day of our Lord [Phil. 1:6]; and this: By grace you are made safe through faith, and this not of yourselves: for it is the gift of God [Eph. 2:8]; and that which the Apostle says about himself:I have obtained mercy, that I may be faithful [1 Cor. 7:25;1 Tim. 1:13]; he did not say: “because I was,” but: “that I may be.” And that: What have you, that you have not received? [1 Cor. 4:7]. And that:Every good gift, and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights [Jas. 1:17]. And that: No one has anything, except it has been given him from above [John 3:27]. Innumerable are the testimonies of the Sacred Scriptures which can be brought forward to prove grace, but they are passed over out of a desire for brevity; also because, in truth, more [proofs] will not profit those for whom a few do not suffice.

[III. Predestination] According to the Catholic faith we believe this also, that after grace has been received through baptism, all the baptized with the help and cooperation of Christ can and ought to fulfill what pertains to the salvation of the soul, if they will labor faithfully. We not only do not believe that some have been truly predestined to evil by divine power, but also with every execration we pronounce anathema upon those, if there are [any such], who wish to believe so great an evil. This, too, we profess and believe unto salvation, that in every good work we do not begin, and afterwards are helped by the mercy of God, but He Himself, with no preceding good services [on our part], previously inspires us with faith and love of Him, so that we may both faithfully seek the sacraments of baptism, and after baptism with His help be able to perform those [acts] which are pleasing to Him. So very clearly we should believe that the faith-so admirable-both of that famous thief, whom the Lord restored to his native land of paradise [Luke 23:43], and of Cornelius the centurion, to whom the angel of the Lord was sent [ Acts 10:3], and of Zacheus, who deserved to receive the Lord Himself [Luke 19:6], was not from nature, but a gift of God’s bounty.

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