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Fr. Faber on the Incarnation

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Fr. Faber on the Incarnation

Post  Roguejim on Thu Aug 18, 2011 3:07 pm

I'm moving slowly through Fr. Faber's Precious Blood because he presents much to contemplate, in a style which I happen to like. Here's a little something which caught me by surprise because I had always considered the Incarnation strictly in terns of atonement/redemption. He presents a different view here (my emphasis added):

..."Moreover, it was always part of his
intention that the Creator should become as it
were part of his own creation, and that an Un
created Person should really and truly assume a
created nature and be born of a created mother.
This is what we call the mystery of the Incarna
tion. It is this which makes creation so magnifi
cent. It was not merely a beautiful thing which
God made as an artificer, and which he set outside
of himself, and kept at a distance from himself to
look at, to admire, to pity, and to love. He always
intended to be part of it himself in a very wonder
ful way. So that there would have been Jesus and
Mary, even if there had never been any sin
: only
Jesus would not have been crucified, and Mary
would not have had any dolors. But the sight
of sin was also with God from the beginning, that
is, through all his unbeginning eternity; and thus
the Precious Blood also, as the ransom for sin, was
with him from the beginning..."

While I did not question Fr. Faber's orthodoxy , nor brand him a heretic from my esteemed position as "hack internet theologian", I did run it by the "retired theology professor" for his comments, which ended up being interesting. Here they are, below my initial query:

Dear Theologian,

I've been reading Fr. Faber's Precious Blood. My question concerns the underlined/bolded part below. I was under the perhaps mistaken belief that the Incarnation was solely for the purpose of atonement and redemption, that if it hadn't been for the sin of Adam and Eve, there would have been no reason for it. Fr. Faber seems to say otherwise. Are his thoughts traditional Catholic thought? Is his view open to discussion, i.e., do orthodox theologians still discuss/debate this?

In Jesus and Mary,

Dear Roguejim,

"Both views are within the bonds of orthodoxy.
The dominant, Thomistic, view has been that the Incarnation took place only in view of sin and the need for Redemption. However, St. Thomas' Franciscan contemporary, St. Bonaventure, took the opposite view, and many or most Franciscan theologians have followed him, as does Fr. Faber.


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Re: Fr. Faber on the Incarnation

Post  Roguejim on Thu Aug 18, 2011 3:37 pm

Prof's reply should read "bounds of orthodoxy".

The EDIT feature here stinks.

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