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Evolution - Theological

(6,246 words)

Author(s): Karl Rahner
Part of Evolution: 1. Anthropological 2. Theological A. Evolution 1. The unity of the world of mind and matter. Philosophical and theological reflection proceeds on the assumption that the fact of evolution is established by natural science. With the resources of theology or philosophy this can neither be proved nor rejected as impossible. a) Since according to Christian philosophy and theology every created being, because finite, is in a state of becoming and changing and is part of the unity of the world which is directed towards a single goal o…


(2,174 words)

Author(s): Karl Rahner
1. Concept. Contrition is an element or aspect in that process of individual salvation which is usually called metanoia, conversion (in the sense of change of heart and life), repentance, justification. It can therefore only be correctly understood and judged in that larger context. Since it is a rejection of sin, it presupposes a theologically correct understanding of sin and guilt. 2. The teaching of the Church. The Council of Trent describes contrition as “sorrow of heart and detestation for sin committed, with the resolution not to sin again” ( D 897, 915). The Church’s doctrine …

Grace - Theological

(7,459 words)

Author(s): Johann Auer | Karl Rahner
Part of Grace: 1. Biblical 2. Theological 3. Structure of De Gratia A. History of Doctrine The doctrine of grace propounds the theological problem at the heart of Christian faith, insofar as faith reveals man’s understanding of himself, the world and God. The task of human life in the world is here displayed in all its tensions: the doctrine of the divine choice, call and election which integrate human responsibility into the order of a world regulated by the goodness and holiness of God; the doctrine of the re…

Salvation - Theology

(10,422 words)

Author(s): Karl Rahner | Franz Lakner
Part of Salvation: 1. Universal Salvific Will 2. Biblical Concept 3. History of Salvation (“Salvation History”) 4. Theology A. Redemption 1. The fundamental problem, a) Redemption objectively presupposes a need of redemption and subjectively the admission (the acceptance) by man of his need. The startingpoint must therefore always be the question whether there is such a need of salvation, what constitutes it and how man can be brought to take an honest attitude to this fundamental fact of existence. (i) In the first place this need for deliverance signifies the condition i…

Revelation - Concept of Revelation

(8,852 words)

Author(s): Norbert Schiffers | Karl Rahner
Part of Revelation: 1. Concept of Revelation 2. God’s Self-Communication 3. Primitive Revelation 4. Private Revelation A. The Basic Notion 1. History of religion, a) Though the science of religion has not succeeded in proving the existence of a primitive revelation, it would be wrong to assume that all notions of revelation outside the Jewish and Christian religions are merely philosophy. Critique of religion may lead one to affirm that procedures aiming at self-deliverance, using either external or internal means, st…

Resurrection - Resurrection of Christ

(8,894 words)

Author(s): Karl Rahner | Joseph Schmitt
Part of Resurrection: 1. Resurrection of Christ 2. Resurrection of the Body A. Preliminary Considerations If the resurrection of Jesus is to be proclaimed credibly at the present day as a fundamental dogma of Christianity, then (logically) we must first establish the a priori horizon within which it can “dawn” intelligibly and credibly. This postulate cannot be vitiated by the objection that a “transcendental” question of this kind only arises after the historical experience, whereas the answer is supposed to provide the conditions of possibility of the experience…

Person - Man

(8,272 words)

Author(s): Joseph Möller | Alexander Sand | Karl Rahner
Part of Person: 1. Concept 2. Man A. Philosophical 1. The question posed by the definition. The best known definition of man is animal rationale, which probably goes back to the Peripatetics. According to Iamblichus (De Vita Pythagorica, 31) the definition was already given by Aristotle himself. It was adopted by the scholastics, e.g., Boethius, Isagoge Porphyrii, Commentarium, editto prima, I, 20 ( PL, LXIV, col. 35); Anselm of Canterbury, Monologion, cap. 10; De grammatico, cap. 8; Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, II/II, q. 34, a. 5; Summa contra Gentiles, II, 95; III, 39; De Potentia, VIII, 4. I…

Salvation - History of Salvation (“Salvation History”)

(11,892 words)

Author(s): Klaus Berger | Adolf Darlap | Karl Rahner
Part of Salvation: 1. Universal Salvific Will 2. Biblical Concept 3. History of Salvation (“Salvation History”) 4. Theology A. Theological Analysis 1. Biblical approach: The genesis of “history of salvation” as a scriptural concept. a) An exegetical investigation of the concept of “history of salvation” must examine the relationship of a purely political interpretation of events to a theological one, in the various biblical traditions. No event is “chemically pure”, but presents itself with various meanings. Since this is so, in…

Bible - Introduction

(14,719 words)

Author(s): Josef Schreiner | Klaus Berger | Karl Rahner
Part of Bible: 1. Introduction 2. Versions 3. Biblical Hermeneutics 4. Scripture Reading A. Exegesis 1. Old Testament a) Name and contents of the Old Testament. The collection of books which Jesus, the primitive community and the sub-apostolic generation regarded as sacred Scripture is known to Christians as the Old Testament, in the form later determined by the fixing of the canon. The term “Old Testament”, by which it is distinguished from the New and honoured as the attestation of the first divine plan of salvation, ordained by God in earlier times (cf. Heb 9:15), o…
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