Efficacious and Sufficient Grace

Philosophy and Theology 22 (1/2):353-372 (2010)
Abstract
This article suggests that in the delicate balance between grace and freedom, the opposite of rejecting God’s grace is not acceptance of grace, but rather is non-rejection or the openness to God that is the human person’s obediential potency. Using the insights of Karl Rahner and David Coffey, this article goes on to explain efficacious grace and sufficient grace as the one self-communication of God in the modes of acceptance and rejection. To protect the human freedom, one must emphasize that human persons can reject God’s offer of self, but to protect the gratuity of grace, one must acknowledge that acceptance of God’s grace is always undergirded and empowered by that same grace. The mediating point between these two modes is human openness or obediential potency for grace. One does not have to accept God’s grace to be this openness, but rather one must simply not reject God’s offer of grace, hence the primary categories of human freedom are not rejection and acceptance, but rejection and non-rejection
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