Eric Mascall (1905-1993) on Nature’s relationship to Grace

Mascall, a Thomist for non-Thomists

Erick Ybarra

E.L.Mascall

When traversing through the thick of Mascall’s  The Openness of Being (which is a compilation of his ten Gifford lectures offered at the University of Edinburgh) and his efforts to explain how the supernatural grace of God relates and operates with human nature, one cannot help but sense this annoyance with the mundane Scholastic mantra of separating nature and grace as if they are walled off from each other entitatively. In his generosity, he makes it plain he does not think that what the Scholastics were trying to get at is, per necessity, at odds with the more Scriptural and Patristic doctrine of man’s participation in the saving action of God the Creator. One particular section worth sharing comes from the Third Appendix, Grace and Nature in East and West, where he gives a nice vivid description of this Scholastic tendency while explaining how it can be brought to…

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