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CHICAGO STUDIES

normative, sanctifying world of love, offering all its resources for the task of declaring that word winningly to its generation.

SPIRITUAL THEOLOGY

One can see, therefore, that Rahner will make no rigid compartments separating theoretical theology from lived Christian faith. He brings his dogmatic arsenal to bear on the combat uf the individual spiritual life, anrl even here his preference is for the big guns. For example, the theology of faith, grace, and the Incarnation figure prominently in Rahner's spiritual writings. In this preoccupation, however, they are exposed with pointerl reference to personal experience. Faith is a frequent theme of Rahnet路's more recent writings. He is constantly at pains to indicate the deep locus of Christian faith, in the depths of our confrontation with death and life's grounrl. Knowing that God is bound to be master and unmasterable, the Christian can venture a surrender to his existence, in t.路ust that life will bring him an indefinable strength to survive which he can believe to be Christ's helping Spirit. This relates to the experience of grace, and to a theology of discernment. When Rahner wishes to indicate God's coming in free self-giving, fot路 the saving supp01t of our lives, his predilection is for the less dubitable expet;ences. That is, he points to the occasions of "pure" consolation or unrewarded sacrifice, where it is more clear that the term of our gamble, the intent of our action, is no this-worldly thing. To stay in the dark silence of our horizon, spend ourselves in service no one will ever praise, choose a course our whole sensibility repulses (because it is simply, unconsolingly demanded)-these are the religious acts which confound the world and point to God's free presence in our midst. They explain somewhat the strange actions of the saints, who were always trying to love God more for himself than the happy this-worldly effects of his grace. Grace is therefore Incarnational (the juncture of t?路anscendence and history) in its psychology as well as its dogmatic ontology. That is, God comes into our experience ['reely, in a

Profile for Chicago Studies

Spring 1969  

Volume 8:1

Spring 1969  

Volume 8:1

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