Choose a topic from Part 3a:

15. Limitations or Deficiencies in Christ's Human Soul

1. In the human soul of Christ there can be no sin,original or actual. And, indeed, on this point our Lord challengedmankind: "Which of you," he cried, "can convict meof sin?" (John 8:46.) Sin in Christ would be sin in God, andthe very mention of such a thing is an absurdself-contradiction.

2. In ordinary fallen human natures there is a readinessto sin called the fomes of sin. The Latin wordfomes means touchwood or tinder or any such substance astakes fire from a mere spark. The fomes of sin was in nomanner present in the human soul of Christ.

3. Nor was there ignorance in Christ. In him, aswe have already seen, was the fullness of true knowledge. St. John(1:14) says he was "full of grace and truth."

4. Our Lord could suffer and he had the passions ofthe soul, but not in the way in which we have them. For: (a)in us, the passions tend sometimes to what is evil; this could notbe in Christ; (b) in us, the passions tend to obscure the judgmentof reason; this was not the case in our Lord; (c) in us, thepassions sometimes tend to deflect us or hinder us in doing what isright; this was not so in Christ.

5. Christ endured real pain. Isaias said of himin prophecy (Isa. 53:4): "Surely he hath borne our infirmitiesand carried our sorrows."

6. And our Lord suffered sorrow of soul as wellas pain of body. For he himself said (Matt. 26:38): "My soulis sorrowful even unto death."

7. The human soul of our Lord endured fear as anatural shrinking from pain. But in Christ there was no fear in thesense of uncertainty about future calamity; this sort of fearimplies imperfect knowledge of things to come, and our Lord'sknowledge was perfect.

8. There was wonder also in our Lord'sacquired knowledge, in the sense of marvelling at what was new orextraordinary in his human experience; not, indeed, that he wassurprised or astonished as at something unknown or unforeseen.

9. And there was anger in Christ; not theinordinate urge that we experience as anger, for such imperfectioncannot be in the perfect Christ. His anger was zeal forthe triumphing and prevailing of justice.

10. Our Lord was, at one and the same time, a wayfarer(that is, a human being making his way through life) and acomprehensor (that is, a man enjoying the eternal beatific vision).His soul possessed the beatific vision; his body was still tosuffer before it was glorified and ready to ascend into heaven.

"A person who rails at God in adversity, suffers without merit; moreover by his lack of resignation he adds to his punishment in the next life and experiences greater disquietude of mind in this life."
St Alphonsus de Liguori

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"The greatest glory we can give to God is to do his will in everything."
St Alphonsus de Liguori

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"Obedience is a short cut to perfection."
St Philip Neri

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