Vocation of the Theologian – Revelation elevates Human Reason

Pope Urban II at the Council of Clermont of 10...
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This week, I’ll be posting a few of my favorite passages from the Vocation of the Theologian.

In the Christian faith, knowledge and life, truth and existence are intrinsically connected. Assuredly, the truth given in God’s revelation exceeds the capacity of human knowledge, but it is not opposed to human reason. Revelation in fact penetrates human reason, elevates it, and calls it to give an account of itself (cf. 1 Pet 3:15). For this reason, from the very beginning of the Church, the “standard of teaching” (cf. Rom 6:17) has been linked with baptism to entrance into the mystery of Christ. The service of doctrine, implying as it does the believer’s search for an understanding of the faith, i.e., theology, is therefore something indispensable for the Church.

I know that Jeremy is going to shoot me, but man, do these Catholics sound Wesleyan – I mean, after all, they are using the Wesley Quadrilateral.

Revelation, Human Reason and the such. Plus, I like the part that the standard of teaching is linked with baptism. My baptism is where I began my Christian journey, and was not a mere sign or good show. It was done in obedience to the Covenant of God with Humanity, and in doing so, made me apart of the Family of God, the Body of Christ. It was a cosmic event, just as your baptism was, in which the holds of this world over us were broken.

Revelation which is against Human Reason is esoteric and is gnostic. I don’t mean to deny the supernatural, but when we are talking about theology, it must be something which humanity can understand, and hold, and measure. Later, the document speaks of scientific examinations of Scripture. Scripture, someone once told me, can withstand criticism, for a lot longer than many Christians can.


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