Heythrop Journal 47 (1):1–15 (2006)

Shawn Floyd
Saint Louis University
Aquinas claims that sacred doctrine is a science, or scientia. All scientiae involve demonstrations containing principles which yield conclusions that are necessary and certain. The principles leading to sacred scientia are the articles of faith. Those articles are contained in Scripture and constitute the premises of demonstrations the conclusions of which form sacred doctrine's content. Because of those articles' divine origin, we can expect them to yield conclusions the truth of which is guaranteed. According to William Abraham, however, Aquinas must demonstrate Scripture's divine origin as a condition for achieving a sacred scientia. In the absence of such a demonstration, we cannot be certain that the articles contained in Scripture are God‐breathed, nor can we be certain that the conclusions deduced from them belong to sacred doctrine. Abraham argues that Aquinas's putative demonstration of Scripture's divine origin fails and—consequently—so does his attempt to establish a sacred scientia. In this paper, I will show that Aquinas never intended to provide such a demonstration, nor does he need to in order to secure sacred doctrine's status as a scientia. Furthermore, I will show that achieving sacred scientia is not, pace Abraham, an epistemological undertaking but a spiritual discipline that eventuates in knowledge of and love for God
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DOI 10.1111/j.1468-2265.2006.00275.x
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Aquinas, Virtue, and Recent Epistemology.Thomas S. Hibbs - 1999 - Review of Metaphysics 52 (3):573 - 594.

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