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  • Franciscus Junius

1. DE VERA THEOLOGIA.

De Vera Theologia


On True Theology

1. Cvm vox Theologiae non vno modo sumatur in vsu communi, eius homonymiam tolli oportet antequam ad rem ipsam veniatur. Accipitur autem tripliciter. Aut pro sermone ipsius Dei, aut pro sermone de Deo, idque aliquando propriè pro eo sermone qui de Deo solo, eius essentia & attributis agit. Aut latiùs & synecdochicè pro eo, qui non tantùm de natura Dei, sed etiam diuinis omnibus, id est, relatione creaturarum ad Deum agit. quo significato hîc à nobis accipitur.

1. Since the word “Theology” is not employed only one way in common use, its homonymy must be removed before coming to the thing itself. The word “Theology” is received in three ways: either (1) as the word of God Himself, or (2) as a discourse concerning God (and this sometimes properly refers to a discourse that treats of God alone, His essence, and attributes), or, (3) more broadly and synecdochically, it refers to the discourse that not only discusses the nature of God but also all divine things, that is, the relation of creatures to God. This final signification is the one accepted by us here.

2. Esse autem eam si quis negat, & lumen illud in animis hominum à primo ortu accensum pariter extinguat, & Deum ipsum è medio tollat necesse est. Cùm & omnes ita esse agnoscant naturae luce, & Deus non sit Deus, nisi & sui ipsius sit sciens pro modo ipsius, & ab eo omnis boni defluxus procedat.

2. Moreover, if anyone denies the existence of Theology, they will also necessarily extinguish that light kindled in the souls of men from the very beginning and remove God Himself from their midst. And since all recognize it to be so by the light of nature, God is not God unless He knows Himself in His own way and every effluence of goodness proceeds from him.

3. Est autem Theologia, Sapientia rerum diuinarum. Sapientiam appello, quia solo hoc genere optimè eius vis exprimitur: vt pote certissima principiorum index, amplissima scientiarum omnium princeps, & sapientissima omnium actionum, rationùmque arbitra. Diuinarum rerum adiectione, & objectum eius diuinum indicatur, & modus eius supernaturalis principio, actione, & effectu suo notatur, ac denique finis eius perfectissimus significatur.

3. Theology is wisdom concerning divine things. I call it wisdom because only in this manner (genere) can its meaning be best expressed: as it is the most certain index of principles, the most exalted ruler of all sciences, and the wisest judge of all actions and reasonings. By the addition of the divine matter, its divine object is indicated, its mode is noted to be supernatural in its principle, action, and effect, and finally, its most perfect end is signified.

4. Diuiditur ἀναλογικῶς in ἀρχέτυπον & ἔκτυπον. Illa est ipsius Dei, qua seipsum & omnia Diuina Diuino & ineffabili modo intelligit. quae (vt & omnes Diuinae proprietates) cùm increata sit, simplicissima sit, infinita sit, non magis communicari cum creatura potest, quàm ipsa diuina essentia. Haec verò ἔκτυπος, ex illa priore per gratiosam communicationem expressa atque informata est, ad communicantis gloriam.

4. Theology is divided analogically into the “archetypal” and the “ectypal.” Archetypal theology is that theology of God Himself, by which He understands Himself and all divine things in a divine and ineffable manner. Since archetypal theology is uncreated, most simple, and infinite, it cannot be communicated to creatures any more than the divine essence itself. Ectypal theology is truly expressed and formed by a gracious communication from the former (archetypal theology), to the glory of the One communicating.

5. Ἔκτυπος autem haec communicatur tripliciter, vel per vnionem naturae diuinae cum creata, qualis est in Christo Θεανθρώπῳ secundum humanitatem, quae licèt alia sit à superiori, vt pote eius increatae, infinitae, & essentialis ἀπαύγασμα creatum, finitum & habituale: in se tamen considerata, plenissima & perfectissima est, & quanta à creatura comprehendi potest: cum aliis verò comparata etiam infinita quodammodo, fonsque ac scaturigo inexhausta omnis, quae in alias creaturas deriuatur, sapientiae : vt pote quam propterea à Patre accepit sine mensura, vt fideles ab illo, certô demensô, singuli acciperent pro capacitate sua.

5. This ectypal theology is communicated in three ways: either (1) by the union of the divine nature with the created, as it is in Christ, the God-man, according to his humanity. This theology, although it is distinct from the superior (divine) nature—as the later is uncreated, infinite, and the effulgence (ἀπαύγασμα) of God’s essence, while the former is created, finite, and habitual—yet, in itself, it is most full and perfect, and as much as can be comprehended by a creature. When compared with other creatures, indeed, it is even in a certain sense infinite and an inexhaustible source and fountain of all wisdom that flows into other creatures. For this reason it was received from the Father without measure, so that the faithful, each according to their capacity, may receive it from Him in a certain measure.

6. Alter communicationis modus est per visionem, qua beati Angeli & spiritus Sanctorum, qui corpore soluti cum Angelis in coelo recepti sunt, spirituali modo creatorem suum vident, vti est, lumine intellectuali, perfecto & permanente, ad id ipsis communicato, de Christi plenitudine.

6. (2) Another mode of communication is through vision, by which the blessed angels and the spirits of the saints, who, freed from the body, have been received into heaven with the Angels, behold their Creator in a spiritual manner, as by a perfect and permanent intellectual light, communicated to them from Christ’s fullness.

7. Tertius communicationis modus, qui nos potissimum in hac vita constitutos respicit, est per reuelationem, quae reuelatio aut secundum naturam contingit ex principiis homini congenitis ortum ducens, & Theologia naturalis dicitur. Vel secundum gratiam supernaturalem, ex principiis secundum se notis superioris scientiae lumine procedens, supra humanae rationis modum, & supernaturalis appellatur.

7. (3) The third mode of communication, which chiefly concerns us in this life, is through revelation, which happens either according to nature, arising from congenital principles in men, and is called natural theology, or according to supernatural grace, proceeding from principles known in themselves by the light of a higher science, above the mode of human reason, and is termed supernatural.

8. Harum prior cùm etiam citra imperfectionem homini velut suo subiecto praesens, illum tamen supra naturam per se extollere non potuerit, nisi adminiculo superioris gratiae accedentis: quanto minus iam collapsa, & tantùm non ruinae humanae ruderibus sepulta, hominem ad aliquem eminentioris perfectionis gradum perducat? praesertim cùm ne se quidem, quantum in se est, ad illum perduci sinat. quapropter superioris superuentu vt collapsam restituat, & restitutam supra ipsam euehat, omnino est opus.

8. Of these (modes of communication), the former, though present to man as its subject without imperfection, could not, however, raise him above nature on its own, except by the help of superior grace coming to him. How much less, then, could it lead man, already fallen and almost buried under the ruins of human nature, to some higher degree of perfection? Especially since it does not even allow itself, as far as it is concerned, to be led to that state. Therefore, it is entirely necessary that with the arrival of the superior (mode of communication), it restores what has collapsed and elevates it above itself once again.

9. Supernaturalis autem haec spectatur tum absolutè in se & causis suis, & Theologia abstracta dicitur, tum relatè ad subiectum cui inest, & Theologia concreta appellatur.

9. This supernatural (mode of communication) is considered both absolutely in itself and in its causes, and is called abstract theology. It is also considered in relation to the subject in which it inheres and is called concrete theology.

10. In se & causis suis simpliciter sancta, iusta & perfecta est, siue causam efficientem, primariam quidem Deum ipsum reuelantem, instrumentalem verò sermonem Dei προφορικόν, partim spiritualem, partim corporalem spectes: siue materiam Deum ipsum, & res omnes ad Deum ordinatas: siue formam, diuinam veritatem toti & omnibus partibus aequaliter infusam consideres: siue denique ad finem primarium Dei rectè agniti gloriam, & secundarium salutem nostram praesentem & futuram, animum aduertas.

10. In itself and in its causes, it is absolutely holy, just, and perfect, whether you examine the efficient cause, which is primarily God Himself revealing, and instrumentally, the divine oral Word of God, partly spiritual and partly corporeal, or if you consider the matter, which is God Himself and all things ordered towards God, or if you consider the form, divine truth infused equally into the whole and all its parts, or, finally, if you direct your mind to the primary end of God’s glory rightly acknowledged, and the secondary end, our present and future salvation.

11. Theologia verò cum subiecto suo concreta est quidem eadem diuinarum rerum Sapientia (vna enim tantùm est in se, aeterna & immutabilis) sed pro ratione tamen hominum quibus inest variè modificatur, his amplius, illis paucius de ea capientibus: prout corrupta natura magis vel minus, gratia Dei superueniente, ab inscientia sua vindicatur, adeo vt, cùm à summo ad imum infiniti sint gradus, certus eius modus nullus assignari possit.

11. But, concrete theology, together with its subject, is, indeed, the same as the wisdom of divine things—for it is only one in itself, eternal and immutable. Nevertheless, it is modified variously according to the reasoning of humans in whom it resides, with some grasping more and others less, as corrupted nature is more or less restored by the grace of God overcoming its ignorance, so that, since there are infinite degrees from the highest to the lowest, no definite measure of it can be assigned.

12. Est autem vera haec Theologia (vtrouis modo acceperis) vera diuinarum rerum Sapientia communicata diuinitus ad Dei gloriam. Cumque omnis Sapientiae ea sit ratio, vt facultatem & operationem sui Sapienti praestet, rectè huic Sapientiae sua facultas & operatio ex sacris Scripturis tribuitur. Est enim facultas eius, cognitio Dei & nostri, quae ita inter se cohaerent, vt neutram sine altera possimus assequi: operatio verò, pia & fidelis actio, qua haec cognitio sanctè occupatur apud Deum & Ecclesiam ipsius in omnibus pietatis, iustitiae, sanctimoniae & veritatis officiis secundum Deum.

12. This true Theology (in whichever manner you take it) is the true wisdom of divine things, divinely communicated for the glory of God. Since the essence (ratio) of all Wisdom is to furnish faculty and operation to the wise, this faculty and operation is rightly assigned to wisdom from the Holy Scriptures. For its faculty is the knowledge of God and ourselves, which are so united with each other that we cannot attain one without the other; and its operation is a pious and faithful action, by which this knowledge is devotedly (sanctè) occupied, before God and His Church, in all duties of piety, justice, sanctity, and truth according to God.



(Junius) 1. DE VERA THEOLOGIA
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