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God the Father in the Theology of St. Thomas Aquinas

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John Baptist Ku

God the Father in the Theology of St. Thomas Aquinas is an exposition of Aquinas’ theology of God the Father as a coherent whole. Surprising as it might be, there has not been an extended treatment of Aquinas’ theology of God the Father. Three misconceptions are addressed: (1) the idea that Aquinas’ speculative Trinitarian theology is detached from Scripture; (2) the supposition that in Aquinas’ understanding, the Father’s relation to the Holy Spirit is an afterthought to the Father’s relation to the Son; and (3) the view that for Thomas, the Father has no proper mode of action in the created universe – since Thomas maintains that in all ad extra activity, the Trinity acts as a single principle. Two less polemical, more perennial issues are discussed as well. First, the concept of relation, as the key to a coherent account of three distinct persons in one same divine essence, emerges as an important theme in Aquinas’ exposition of the Father’s paternity and innascibility. Second, Aquinas understands the Father as the source of unity in the Trinity and as the beginning and end of the whole created universe. It becomes clear that St. Thomas places forceful emphasis on the Son’s equality to the Father and on the radical difference between the creator and the creature.

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Abbreviations xiii

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Abbreviations Works of St. Thomas Aquinas Catena Aurea in Ioan. Catena Aurea in Quatuor Evangelia: Expositio in Ioannem CEG Contra Errores Graecorum CT Compendium Theologiae De Potentia Quaestiones Disputatae de Potentia De Rationibus Fidei De Rationibus Fidei De Unione Verbi Quaestio Disputata de Unione Verbi Incarnati De Veritate Quaestiones Disputatae de Veritate De Virtutibus Quaestiones Disputatae de Virtutibus In I ad Cor. Super Epistolas S. Pauli Lectura: Primam ad Corinthios In I ad Thess. Super Epistolas S. Pauli Lectura: Primam ad Thessalonicenses In II ad Cor. Super Epistolas S. Pauli Lectura: Secundam ad Corinthios In ad Col. Super Epistolas S. Pauli Lectura: ad Colossenses In ad Eph. Super Epistolas S. Pauli Lectura: ad Ephesios In ad Gal. Super Epistolas S. Pauli Lectura: ad Galatas In ad Heb. Super Epistolas S. Pauli Lectura: ad Hebraeos In ad Phil. Super Epistolas S. Pauli Lectura: ad Philippenses In ad Rom. Super Epistolas S. Pauli Lectura: ad Romanos In I ad Tim. Super Epistolas S. Pauli Lectura: ad Timotheum In de Anima In Aristotelis Librum De Anima xiv God the Father in the Theology of St. Thomas Aquinas In Dionysii de div. nom. In Librum beati Dionysii de Divinis Nominibus Expositio In Ioan. Super Evangelium S. Ioannis Lectura In Metaphysicam In Metaphysicam Aristotelis In Matt. Super Evangelium S. Matthaei Lectura In Orationem Dominicam In Orationem Dominicam In Symbol. Apost. In Symbolum Apostolorum Expositio Quolibet. Quaestiones de Quolibet Resp. de 108 art. Responsio de 108 articulis SCG Summa contra Gentiles Sent. Scriptum Super Libros Sententiarum...

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