Franciscan Disunity

Scotus disagrees with Bonaventure almost as much as he disagrees with the Dominican Aquinas.


Theologia in Se

cotus distinguishes between theologia in se (theology in itself) and theologia nostra (our theology). The first refers to all possible knowledge about God: all those things which are naturally known by God about himself. The second refers to the understanding possible for us to have in this life. The 'theology' of interest throughout the rest of this chapter is theologia nostra. This theology is the study of those facts about God that we can only know via revelation.


, Scotus argues that he can show that we can only have knowledge of God in his essence if God decides to reveal himself to us.


Richard Cross, Duns Scotus (Great Medieval Thinkers)

Proto-Pre-Forerunner of the Reformation

Scotus’ influence on succeeding thinkers is great. There are some clear links between Scotus’ thought and that of the Reformers. Perhaps the most obvious one is Scotus’ merely forensic account of the remission of sins.


Richard Cross, Duns Scotus (Great Medieval Thinkers)

The Polisher

Stephen Charnock wrote, “The goodness of God makes the devil a polisher, while he intends to be a destroyer.”30 This polishing makes our metal shine. Indeed, God’s wisdom rules over Satan’s schemes so that the devil accomplishes God’s plans.

Charnock, The Existence and Attributes of God, in Works, 2:364.

Joel R. Beeke and Mark Jones, A Puritan Theology: Doctrine for Life (Grand Rapids, MI: Reformation Heritage Books, 2012), 193.

Absent-Thinking Education of the negative consequences of a practical emphasis is that one can proceed apace through every program of education, including a doctorate, and never undertake the type of study that used to be touted as foundational for any true, meaningful, and lasting education.


An education that is focused on practice may produce employment, but it may also produce a society wherein reading, thinking, studying, meditating, synthesizing, and persuading are virtually absent. Witness, for example, any televised political debate. No matter which side of the political spectrum one is on, to call what happens on television within an hour or two a debate is, from the perspective of history, laughable.


Infinite to the Finite

[Kant] is right that we cannot move from the finite to the infinite, but he has not considered that the infinite has moved to the finite. In that light, Kant hasn’t even broached the most basic truths of the Christian God. Only a god who has not condescended to be the Lord could be reduced to a pure concept. The true, triune God, who is the Lord, has come from the infinite to the finite.


Anselmian Believers

That's what Anselmian believers do: they prayerfully exercise their rational powers in order to understand what they already believe.


Sandra Visser;Thomas Williams. Anselm (p. 7). Kindle Edition.

Debt Inheritance

Anselm's second reply is to argue that the strictness of God's judgment is actually not out of line with our own moral judgments. He invites us to consider an analogy: "Suppose a man and his wife who have been promoted moted to some great dignity and possession, not by their own merit but by grace alone, together commit some serious crime for which there is no excuse, and because of this crime they are justly dispossessed and reduced to servitude. Who would say that the children they have after their condemnation demnation do not deserve to be subjected to servitude as well, but rather should by grace be restored to those good things that their parents justly lost?"22 One can imagine that this analogy would have been more persuasive sive in Anselm's day than it is in ours, since many of us will have meritocratic itocratic and individualistic intuitions that undercut its force. We might agree that the children should not be restored to the rank and possessions that their parents justly lost-certainly in practice we would not restore them-but we would not think it fair to subject the children to servitude (or imprisonment, or the denial of the franchise, or whatever the analogous gous punishment in the current day might be). Even if, as would certainly happen in practice, the children grew up in the poverty resulting from their parents' deprivation, their poverty would not be permanent-not, at least, as a matter of law. They would be allowed to work their way back into prosperity and respectability. And if their parents died in debt, and without the means to satisfy the creditors, the children would not inherit that indebtedness.

On the Virginal Conception, and On Original Sin 28 (11:171)

Sandra Visser;Thomas Williams. Anselm (pp. 247-248). Kindle Edition.