425. What is the relationship between grace and human freedom?

Grace precedes, prepares and elicits our free response. It responds to the deep yearnings of human freedom, calls for its cooperation and leads freedom toward its perfection.


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2001. The preparation of man for the reception of grace is already a work of grace. This latter is needed to arouse and sustain our collaboration in justification through faith, and in sanctification through charity. God brings to completion in us what he has begun, "since he who completes his work by cooperating with our will began by working so that we might will it:"50

Indeed we also work, but we are only collaborating with God who works, for his mercy has gone before us. It has gone before us so that we may be healed, and follows us so that once healed, we may be given life; it goes before us so that we may be called, and follows us so that we may be glorified; it goes before us so that we may live devoutly, and follows us so that we may always live with God: for without him we can do nothing.51

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2002. God's free initiative demands man's free response, for God has created man in his image by conferring on him, along with freedom, the power to know him and love him. the soul only enters freely into the communion of love. God immediately touches and directly moves the heart of man. He has placed in man a longing for truth and goodness that only he can satisfy. the promises of "eternal life" respond, beyond all hope, to this desire:

If at the end of your very good works . . ., you rested on the seventh day, it was to foretell by the voice of your book that at the end of our works, which are indeed "very good" since you have given them to us, we shall also rest in you on the sabbath of eternal life.52


Acesse nossos estudos biblicos:

What does Hosea 7:14-16 reveal about God’s judgment against hypocrisy?

What is the importance of faithfulness to God, according to the book of Tobias?

What does the Bible say about divine justice in Deuteronomy 32:4?

What is the unchanging nature of God, according to Malachi 3:6?

What is the story behind the miracle of Elisha’s resurrection of the Shunammite’s son in 2 Kings 4?

How does the story of Judith, in particular, the episode of her cunning in Judith 11:1-16, teach us survival strategies in difficult times, according to the Bible?

How can we flee the appearances of evil, as described in 1 Thessalonians 5:22?

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