Man’s Capacity for God

Part One
THE PROFESSION OF FAITH

Section One
“I BELIEVE” – “WE BELIEVE”

Chapter One
MAN’S CAPACITY FOR GOD

“You are great, O Lord, and greatly to be praised [ . . . ] You have made us for yourself and our heart is restless until it rests in you.” (Saint Augustine)
30

2.  Why does man have a desire for God?
27-30, 44-45

God himself, in creating man in his own image, has written upon his heart the desire to see him.  Even if this desire is often ignored, God never ceases to draw man to himself because only in God will he find and live the fullness of truth and happiness for which he never stops searching.  By nature and by vocation, therefore, man is a religious being, capable of entering into communion with God.  This intimate and vital bond with God confers on man his fundamental dignity.

3.  How is it possible to know God with only the light of human reason?
31-36, 46-47

Starting from creation, that is from the world and from the human person, through reason alone one can know God with certainty as the origin and end of the universe, as the highest good and as infinite truth and beauty.

4.  Is the light of reason alone sufficient to know the mystery of God?
37-38

In coming to a knowledge of God by the light of reason alone man experiences many difficulties.  Indeed, on his own he is unable to enter into the intimacy of the divine mystery.  This is why he stands in need of being enlightened by God’s revelation, not only about those things that exceed his understanding, but also about those religious and moral truths which of themselves are not beyond the grasp of human reason, so that even in the present condition of the human race, they can be known by all with ease, with firm certainty and with no admixture of error.

5.  How can we speak about God?
39-43, 48-49

By taking as our starting point the perfections of man and of the other creatures which are a reflection, albeit a limited one, of the infinite perfection of God, we are able to speak about God with all people.  We must, however, continually purify our language insofar as it is image-bound and imperfect, realizing that we can never fully express the infinite mystery of God.

May God bless you,
Signature

Compendium-of-the-Catechism-of-the-Catholic-Church30793lgCOMPENDIUM Catechism of the Catholic Church
 United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

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