Disputatio contra scholasticam theologiam, 1517

WA 1,224-228 [Cl 5 320-326]

Ad subscriptas conclusiones respondebit Magister Franciscus Guntherus Nordhusensis pro Biblia, Presidente Reverendo patre
Martino Luthero Augustiniano, Sacrae Theologiae Vuittenberg.
Decano, loco et tempore statuendis.

1. Dicere, quod Augustinus contra haereticos excessive loquatur, est dicere, Augustinum fere ubique mentitum esse;
1. To say that Augustine exaggerates in speaking against heretics is to say that Augustine tells lies almost everywhere. This is contrary to common knowledge.
2. Idem est Pelagianis et omnibus haereticis tribuere occasionem triumphandi, immo victoriam;
2. This is the same as permitting Pelagians and all heretics to triumph, indeed, the same as conceding victory to them.
3. Et idem est omnium ecclesiasticorum doctorum authoritatem illusioni exponere;
3. It is the same as making sport of the authority of all doctor of the theology.
4. Veritas itaque est quod homo arbor mala factus non potest nisi malum velle et facere.
4. It is therefore true that man, being a bad tree, can only will and do evil [cf. Matt. 7:17-18].
5. Falsitas est quod 'appetitus liber poest in utrunque oppositorum', immo nec liber sed captivus est.
5. It is false to state that man’s inclination is free to choose between either of two opposites. Indeed, the inclination is not free, but captive. This is said in opposition to common opinion.
6. Falsitas est quod 'voluntas possit se conformare dictamini recto naturaliter';
6. It is false to state that the will can by nature conform to correct precept. This is said in opposition to Scotus and Gabriel.
7. Sed necessario elicit actum difformem et malum sine gratia dei;
7. As a matter of fact, without the grace of God the will produces an act that is perverse and evil.
8. Nec ideo sequitur, quod sit naturaliter mala, id est natura mali secundum Manicheos;
8. It does not, however, follow that the will is by nature evil, that is, essentially evil, as the Manichaeans maintain.
9. Est tamen naturaliter et inevitabiliter mala et viciata natura.
9. It is nevertheless innately and inevitably evil and corrupt.
10. Conceditur, quod 'voluntas non est libera ad tendendum in quodlibet secundum rationem boni sibi ostensum';
10. One must concede that the will is not free to strive toward whatever is declared good. This in opposition to Scotus and Gabriel.
11. Nec est 'in potestate eius velle et nolle quodlibet ostensum';
11. Nor is it able to will or not to will whatever is prescribed.
12. Nec sic dicere 'est contra B. Augustinum dicentem: Nihil est ita in potestate voluntatis sicut ipsa voluntas'.
12. Nor does one contradict St. Augustine when one says that nothing is so much in the power of the will as the will itself.
13. Absurdissima est consequentia: 'homo errans potest diligere creaturam super omnia', 'ergo et deum'.
13. It is absurd to conclude that erring man can love the creature above all things, therefore also God. This in opposition to Scotus and Gabriel.
14. Nec est 'mirum, quod potest se conformare dictamini erroneo et non recto',
14. Nor is it surprising that the will can conform to erroneous and not to correct precept.
15. Immo hoc ei proprium est, ut tantummodo erroneo sed conformet et non recto;
15. Indeed, it is peculiar to it that it can only conform to erroneous and not to correct precept.
16. Illa potius est consequentia: homo errans potest diligere creaturam, ergo impossibile est ut diligat deum;
16. On ought rather to conclude: since erring man is able to love the creature it is impossible for him to love God.
17. Non 'potest homo naturaliter velle deum esse deum', immo vellet se esse deum et deum non esse deum.
17. Man is by nature unable to want God to be God. Indeed, he himself wants to be God, and does not want God to be God.
18. 'Diligere deum supper omnia naturaliter' est terminus fictus, sicut Chimera.
18. To love God above all things by nature is a fictitious term, a chimera, as it were. This is contrary to common teaching.
19. Nec valet ratio Scoti de forti politico rempublicam plusquam seipsum diligente.
19. Nor can we apply the reasoning of Scotus concerning the brave citizen who loves his country more than himself.
20. Actus amicitiae non est naturae, sed gratiae praevenientis;
20. An act of friendship is done, not according to nature, but according to prevenient grace. This in opposition to Gabriel.
21. Non est in natura nisi actus consupiscentiae erga deum;
21. No act is done according to nature that is not an act of concupiscence against God.
22. Omnis actus concupiscentiae erga deum est malum et fornicatio spiritus.
22. Every act of concupiscence against God is evil and a fornication of the spirit.
23. Nec est verum quod actus concupiscentiae possit ordinari per virtutem spei;
23. Nor is it true that an act of concupiscence can be set aright by the virtue of hope. This in opposition to Gabriel.
24. Quia spes non est contra charitatem, quae solum quae dei sunt querit et cupit.
24. For hope is not contrary to charity, which seeks and desires only that which is of God.
25. Spes non venit ex meritis, sed ex passionibus merita destruentibus.
25. Hope does not grow out of merits, but out of suffering which destroys merits. This in opposition to the opinion of many.
26. 'Actus amicitiae' non est 'perfectissimus modus faciendi quod est in se'; Nec est 'dispositio' perfectissima 'ad gratiam Dei' aut modus 'convertendi et appropinquandi ad Deum';
26. An act of friendship is not the most perfect means for accomplishing that, which is in one. Nor is it the most perfect means for obtaining the grace of God or turning toward and approaching God.
27. Sed est actus iam perfectae conversionis, tempore et natura posterior gratia;
27. But it is an act of a conversion already perfected, following grace both in time and by nature.
28. Illae authoritates: 'Concertimini ad me, et convertar ad vos', Item: 'appropinquate deo et appropinquabit vobis', Item: 'Quaerite et invenietis', Item: 'Si quaesieritis me, inveniar a vobis', et iis similes si dicantur, quod 'unum naturae, alterum gratiae sit, nihl aliud quam quod pelagiani dixerunt' asseritur [, secundum b. Augustinum].
28. If it is said of the Scripture passages, "Return to me, - and I will return to you" [Zech. 1:3], "Draw near to God and he will draw near to you" [Jas. 4:8], "Seek and you will find" [Matt. 7:7], "You will seek me and find me" [Jer. 29:13], and the like, that one is by nature, the other by grace, this is no different from asserting what the Pelagians have said.
29. Optima et infallibilis ad gratiam praeparatio et unica dispositio est aeterna dei electio et praedestinatio;
29. The best and infallible preparation for grace and the sole means of obtaining grace is the eternal election and predestination of God.
30. Ex parte autem hominis nihil nisi indispositio, immo rebellio gratiae gratiam praecedit.
30. On the part of man, however, nothing precedes grace except ill will and even rebellion against grace.
31. Vanissimo commento dicitur: 'praedestinatus potest damnari in sensu diviso, Sed non in composito';
31. It is said with the idlest demonstrations that the predestined can be damned individually but not collectively. This in opposition to the scholastics.
32. Nihil quoque efficitur per illud dictum: 'praedestinatio est necessaria necessitate consequentiae, Sed non consequentis'.
32. Moreover, nothing is achieved by the following saying: Predestination is necessary by virtue of the consequence of God’s willing, but not of what actually followed, namely, that God had to elect a certain person.
33. Falsum et illud est, quod facere quod est in se sit removere obstacula gratiae.
33. And this is false, that doing all that one is able to do can remove the obstacles to grace. This in opposition to several authorities.
34. Breviter, Nec rectum dictamen habet natura nec bonam voluntatem.
34. In brief, man by nature has neither correct precept nor good will.
35. Non est verum quod ignorantia invincibilis a toto ecusat:
35. It is not true that an invincible ignorance excuses one completely (all scholastics notwithstanding);
36. Quia ignorantia dei et sui et boni operis est naturae semper invincibilis;
36. For ignorance of God and oneself and good works is by nature always invincible.
37. Natura etiam in opere specietenus et foris bono intus necessario gloriatur et superbit.
37. Nature, moreover, inwardly and necessarily glories and takes pride in every work which is apparently and outwardly good.
38. Nulla est virtus moralis sine vel superbia vel tristicia, id est, peccato.
38. There is no moral virtue without either pride or sorrow, that is, without sin.
39. Non 'sumus domini actuum nostrorum a principio usque ad finem', sed servi.
39. We are never lords of our actions, but servants. This in opposition to the philosophers.
40. Non 'efficimur iusti iusta operando', sed iusti facti operamur iusta.
40. We do not become righteous by doing righteous deeds but, having been made righteous, we do righteous deeds. This is opposition to the philosophers.
41. Tota fere Artistotelis Ethica pessima est gratiae inimica.
41. Virtually the entire Ethics of Aristotle is the worst enemy of grace. This in opposition to the scholastics.
42. Error est, Aristotelis sententiam de felicitate non repugnare doctrinae catholicae.
42. It is an error to maintain that Aristotle’s statement concerning happiness does not contradict Catholic doctrine. This in opposition to the doctrine on morals.
43. Error est dicere: 'sine Aristotele non fit theologus';
43. It is an error to say that no man can become a theologian without Aristotle. This in opposition to common opinion.
44. Immo theologus non fit nisi id fiat sine Artistotele.
44. Indeed, no one can become a theologian unless he becomes one without Aristotle.
45. 'Theologus non logicus est monstrosus haereticus', est monstrosa et haeretica oratio.
45. To state that a theologian who is not a logician is a monstrous heretic – this is a monstrous and heretical statement. This in opposition to common opinion.
46. Frustra fingitur logica fidei, suppositio mediata extra terminum et numerum.
46. In vain does one fashion a logic of faith, a substitution brought about without regard for limit and measure. This in opposition to the new dialecticians.
47. Nulla forma syllogistica tenet in terminis divinis.
47. No syllogistic form is valid when applied to divine terms. This in opposition to the Cardinal.
48. Non tamen ideo sequitur, veritatem articuli trinitatis repugnare formis syllogisticis.
48. Nevertheless it does not for that reason follow that the truth of the doctrine of the Trinity contradicts syllogistic form. This in opposition to the same new dialecticians and to the Cardinal.
49. Si forma syllogistica tenet in divinis, articulus trinitatis erit scitus et non creditus.
49. If a syllogistic form of reasoning holds in divine matters, then the doctrine of the Trinity is demonstrable and not the object of faith.
50. Breviter, totus Artistoteles ad theologiam est tenebrae ad lucem.
50. Briefly, the whole Aristotle is to theology as darkness in to light. This in opposition to the scholastics.
51. Dubium est vehemens, an sententia Aristotelis sit apud latinos.
51. It is very doubtful whether the Latins comprehended the correct meaning of Aristotle.
52. Bonum erat ecclesiae, si theologis natus non fuisset Porphyrius cum suis universalibus.
52. It would have been better for the church if Porphyrus with his universals had not been born for the use of theologians.
53. Usitatiores definitiones Aristotelis videntur petere principium. 53. Even the more useful definitions of Aristotle seem to beg the question.
54. Ad actum meritorium satis est coexistentia gratiae aut coexistencia nihil est;
54. For an act to be meritorious, either the presence of grace is sufficient, or its presence means nothing. This in opposition to Gabriel.
55. Gratia dei nunquam sic coexistit ut otiosa, sed est vivus, mobilis et operosus spiritus;
55. The grace of God is never present in such a way it is inactive, but it is a living, active, and operative spirit.
56. Nec per Dei absolutam potentiam fieri potest, ut actus amicitiae sit et gratia Dei praesens nonsit.
56. Nor can it through the absolute power of God act so that an act of love may be present without the presence of the grace of God. This in opposition to Gabriel.
57. Nonpotest deus acceptare hominem sine gratia dei iustificante.
57. God cannot accept man without his justifying grace. This in opposition to Ockham.
58. Periculosa est haec oratio: 'lex praecipit, quod actus praecepti fiat in gratia dei?;
58. It is dangerous to say that the law teaches that its performance takes place in the grace of God. This in opposition to the Cardinal and Gabriel.
59. Sequitur ex ea, quod gratiam dei habere sit iam nova ultra legem exactio;
59. From this it would follow that "to have the grace of God" is actually a new demand going beyond the law.
60. Ex eadem sequitur quod actus praecepti possit fieri sine gratia dei;
60. It would also follow that fulfilling the law can take place without the grace of God.
61. Item sequitur quod odiosior fiat gratia dei quam fuit lex ipsa.
61. Likewise it follows that the grace of God would be more burdensome than the law itself.
62. Non sequitur: 'lex debet servari et impleti in gratia dei;
62. It does not follow that the law should be complied with and fulfilled in the grace of God. This in opposition to Gabriel.
63. Ergo assidue peccat, qui extra gratiam dei est, non occidendo, non mechando, non furanda';
63. Therefore he who is outside the grace of God sins incessantly, even when he does not attack someone, when he does not do evil, when he does not become enraged.
64. Sed sequitur: peccat, non spiritualiter legem implendo.
64. But it follows that he sins because he does not spiritually fulfil the law.
65. Spiritualiter non occidit, non mechatur, non furatur qui nec irascitur nec concupiscit.
65. Spiritually that person does not kill, does not do evil, does not become enraged when he neither becomes angry nor lusts.
66. Extra gratiam dei adeo impossibile est, non irasci, non concupiscere ut nec in gratia satis id fieri possit ad legis perfectionem.
66. Outside the grace of God it is indeed impossible not to become angry or lust, so that not even in grace is it possible to fulfil the law perfectly.
67. Hypocritarum est iustitia, opere et foris non occidere, non mechari &c.
67. It is the righteousness of the hypocrite actually and outwardly not to kill, do evil, etc.
68. Gratiae dei est nec concupiscere nec irasci.
68. It is by the grace of God that one does not lust or become enraged.
69. Ipossibile est itaque, legem impleri sine gratia dei ullo modo;
69. Therefore it is impossible to fulfil the law in any way without the grace of God.
70. Quin etiam magis destruitur per naturam sine gratia dei;
70. As a matter of fact, it is more accurate to say that the law is destroyed by nature without the grace of God.
71. Lex bona necessario fit mala voluntati naturali;
71. A good law will of necessity be bad for the natural will.
72. Lex et voluntas sunt adversarii duo sine gratia dei implacabiles;
72. Law and will are two implacable foes without the grace of God.
73. Quod lex vult, semper voluntas non vult nisi timore vel amore simulet se velle;
73. What the law wants, the will never wants, unless it pretends to want it out of fear or love.
74. Lex est exactor voluntatis, quia non superatur nisi per 'parvulum, qui natus est nobis';
74. The law, as taskmaster of the will, will not be overcome except by the "child, who ha been born to us" [Isa. 9:6].
75. Lex facit abundare peccatum, quia irritat et retrahit voluntatem a seipsa;
75. The law makes sin abound because it irritates and repels the will [Rom. 7:13].
76. Gratia autem dei facit abundare iusticiam per Ihesum Christum, quia facit placere legem.
76. The grace of God, however, makes justice abound through Jesus Christ because it causes one to be pleased with the law.
77. Omne opus legis sine gratia dei foris apparet bonum, sed intus est peccatum;
77. Every deed of the law without the grace of God appears good outwardly, but inwardly it is sin. This in opposition to the scholastics.
78. Semper aversa voluntas et conversa manus sunt in lege domini sine gratia dei;
78. The will is always averse to, and he hands inclined toward, the law of the Lord without the grace of God.
79. Conversa voluntas ad legem sine gratia dei est affectu commodi sui talis.
79. The will which is inclined toward the law without the grace of God is so inclined by reason of its own advantage.
80. Maledicti sunt omnes, qui operantur opera legis.
80. Condemned are all those who do the works of the law.
81. Benedicti sunt omnes, qui operantur opera gratiae dei.
81. Blessed are all those who do the works of the grace of God.
82. Cap. 'Falsas' de poenitentia dis. v. confirmat, opera extra gratiam non esse bona, si non false intelligatur.
82. Chapter Falsas concerning penance, dist. 5, confirms the fact that works outside the realm of grace are not good, if this is not understood falsely.
83. Non tantum caeremonialia sunt lex non bona et praecepta in quibus non vivitur,
83. Not only are the religious ceremonials not the good law and the precepts in which one does not live (in opposition to many teachers);
84. Sed et ipse decalogus et quicquid doceri dictarique intus et foris potest.
84. But even the Decalogue itself and all that can be taught and prescribed inwardly and outwardly is not good law either.
85. 'Lex bona' et in qua vivitur 'charitas dei' est 'spiritu sancto diffusa in cordibus nostris'.
85. The good law and in which one lives is the love of God, spread abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit.
86. Voluntas cuiuslibet mallet, si fieri posset, esse nullam legem et se omnino liberam.
86. Anyone’s will would prefer, if it were possible, that there would be no law and to be entirely free.
87. Voluntas cuiuslibet odit sibi legem poni aut amore sui cupit poni.
87. Anyone’s will hates it that the law should be imposed upon it; if, however, the will desires imposition of the law it does so out of love of self.
88. Cum lex sit bona, non potest voluntas, eius inimica, esse bona.
88. Since the law is good, the will, which is hostile to it, cannot be good.
89. Et ex illo clare patet, quod omnis voluntas naturalis est iniqua et mala.
89. And from this it is clear that everyone’s natural will is iniquitous and bad.
90. Necessasia est mediatrix gratia, quae conciliet legem voluntati.
90. Grace as a mediator is necessary to reconcile the law with the will.
91. Gratia dei datur ad dirigendum voluntatem, ne erret etiam in amando deum.
91. The grace of God is given for the purpose of directing the will, lest it err even in lowing God. In opposition to Gabriel.
92. Nec datur, ut frequentius et facilius eliciatur actus, sed quia sine ea non licitur actus amoris.
92. It is not given so that good deeds might be induced more frequently and readily, but because without it no act of love is performed. In opposition to Gabriel.
93. Insolubile est argumetum, superfluam esse charitatem, si homo naturaliter potest in actum amicitiae.
93. I cannot be denied that love is superfluous if man is by nature able to do an act of friendship. In opposition to Gabriel.
94. Subtile malum est dicere, eundem actum esse fruitionem et usum.
94. There is a kind of evil in the argument that an act is at the same time the fruit and the use of the fruit. In opposition to Ockham, the Cardinal, Gabriel.
95. Item quod amor dei stet cum dilectione creaturae, etiam intensa.
95. This holds true also of the saying that the love God may continue alongside an intense love of the creature.
96. Diligere deum est seipsum odisse et praeter deum nihil novisse.
96. To love God is at the same time to hate oneself and to know nothing but God.
97. Tenemur velle nostrum omnino conformare divinae voluntati.
97. We must make our will conform in every respect to the will of God (In opposition to the Cardinal);
98. Non tantum quod vult nos velle, sed prosus quodcumque deus vult velle debemus.
98. So that we not only what God wills, but also ought to will whatever God wills.
In his nihil dicere volumus nec dixisse nos
credimus, quod non sit catholicae ecclesiae
et ecclesiasticis doctoribus consentaneum.
1517
In all we wanted to say, we believe we have said nothing that is not in agreement with the Catholic Church and the teachers of the church.