St. Anselm : Meditation On Human Redemption

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Anselm, sometimes thought of as the first philosopher of Christianity, practiced scholasticism, and in his writings he attempted harmonizing faith and reason. A piece of writing he is author of is called Meditation on Human Redemption. Anselm touches on a variety of topics in this writing. The three major points this document covers are the concept of why God the Father is not able to simply forgive all of humanity’s sins, how justice is to be brought about once humans sin, and how Jesus Christ paid the debts for humanity. He begins by speaking about truth being revealed, writing that God did not “assume human nature to conceal what was known of [himself], but to reveal what was not known.” Jesus came to earth to reveal Himself and any…show more content…
Anselm proposes the idea of the Treasury of Grace. He claims that there are different types of sin, all requiring different ‘amounts of grace’. This idea brings up the idea of limbo, the place where an unbaptized baby goes who has committed no sins. This furthered on to support the idea of purgatory. Anselm’s view highly conflicts with Augustine’s, who believed in the concept of original sin and that it was passed down humanity, which is why babies would need to be baptized in the first place. He goes on to say, “Immutable truth and plain reason then demand that whoever sins should give something better to God in return for the honor of which he has deprived him, that is more than the supposed good for the sake of which he dishonored him.” So, humans were to repay God with something greater than their sin, which is impossible for humans to do. Justice is only able to be brought about by someone with infinite merit: Jesus. Jesus is God and therefore is able to pay the price for all the sins of humanity. His ability comes in His sinlessness and infinity, “he took on himself all the debt that sinners ought to pay, and this when he himself owed no nothing, so that he could pay the debt for the others who owed it and could not pay.” Jesus owed nothing to God, for He is God and He is sinless. Yet, God’s loving nature gives Him His ability. His infinity pays back humanity’s

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