The Only True GOD

Teman2, kebetulan kemaren lg browsing2 sy dapat buku ini…

Asli bingung n terheran2 disini dijelaskan hal2 yg sangat detail mengenai kesalahan2 dogma Tritunggal atau Trinitas dengan kajian Monoteisme. Apakah selama ini paham xg kita anut selama berabad2 adalah salah :mad0261:

Silakan baca The Only True God Sebuah Kajian Monoteisme Alkitabiah

nahh… mungkin teman2 seiman bisa kasi pendapat (setelah membaca tentunya)

Salam Damai Kristus Yesus besertamu.

apakah di buku itu, Yesus Kristus di akui sbg Tuhan atau Allah fren… :coolsmiley:

Sory bro…
sy sendri bl0n selesai bacany… :char11: nie aja lg melototin tulisan itu dr kemaren l0m kelar2… ugghh… 324 hl itupun baru versi ringkasny…

Bro Silver baca aja… tp harus Online, soalny dicopy protect… mungkin ada xg m0 share sekalian gmn caranya spy bisa disave jd PDF di kompi… ??? ;D

bro siip n bruce… jgn lupa baca n kasi koment y… ^^,

oh… kirain anda sdh baca semua fren… :char11:

One True God, YHWH, yng telah mulai dipanggil oleh Enosh, kalau yang lain mah, muncul belakangan boz

smntara Sundul dulu… ntar hilank…
c0z mbacany l0m kelar… :wink:

Waduh, koq kesebut juga?
Kalau siip memang pendeta, nah kalau saya kan cuma pas-pasan ilmunya bro, he he he.
Saya coba intip deh ya.

Syalom

Akhirnya n0ng0l jg br0… Bruce… :afro:
sy tunggu comentarny setelah diintip… :azn:
owww br0 Siip itu pendeta y… bener2 siiipp daahhh…
ntar m0 tanya2… jd bisa saling berbagi n menguatkan iman kekristenan kita semua… ;D

Ha ha ha, jangan bilang saya yang nyebut dia pendeta ya bro, dia selalu mengelak, tetapi kalau dari kualitas tulisannya, sudah pantas dan layak jadi pendeta.

Oiya, internet saya masih lambat, lama sekali akses situs yang anda berikan, mungkin besar sekali file nya, nanti setelah internet saya refresh beberapa hari lagi ya, saya pasti akan lihat.

Syalom

hahaha…
siap br0…
siapapun dia xg penting bisa memberikan pencerahan dr tulisan "The Only True God Sebuah Kajian Monoteisme Alkitabiah

bener bruce… ini file gede banget… min. internet kecepatan 15 kbs baru bisa buka…kl0 dibawah itu xg kliatan cuman file encrypsi doank wkwkwk…

benerny sy sdh berhasil mencaptureny n mo sy upload tp gede banget pdhal di forum ini cuman dibatasi 10000 kb :mad0261:

sy udah baca sampai bab 4 mdh2 hr nie kelar, pedapat xg bisa sy berikan benar2 ALKITABIAH…
bahkan sy berpikir bagaimana seandainy dogma TRINITAS n TRITUNGGAL xg kita percayai selama ini SALAH…???

bro bruce ntar kl0 bro Siip nongol suruh ikutan baca y… :smiley:

sy udah baca sampai bab 4 mdh2 hr nie kelar, pedapat xg bisa sy berikan benar2 ALKITABIAH.... bahkan sy berpikir bagaimana seandainy dogma TRINITAS n TRITUNGGAL xg kita percayai selama ini SALAH....????

bro bruce ntar kl0 bro Siip nongol suruh ikutan baca y…

Nah itu yang perlu hati hati bro, terutama kalau IMAN sudah mulai ‘terkikis’, hati hatilah sebelum membacanya. Karena saya (sebagai Katolik) kok sangat percaya bahwa para Bapa Gereja mula-mula ngga mungkin salah dalam menafsirkan ayat aya dalam Alkitab. Jadi kalau kita ragu ragu, kita bisa coba tengok karya tulis mereka.

Anda sudah pernah baca karya tulis Thomas Aquinas (Summa Theologica) ? Cobalah baca sebagai penyeimbangnya bro.

Syalom

bl0m br0…
nie lg sy c0ba cari… Thomas Aquinas y… Summa Theologica
ok ntar sy baca… :slight_smile:

tp bener deh bro… itu dia jelaskan dgn sangat bagus n alkitabiah :afro:
makanya sy share disini…

Coba ke situs ini bro

http://www.newadvent.org/summa/1.htm

Syalom

thank bro bruce…
nie sy dah dpt versi pdf-ny… jd bisa bc offline… :afro:
St. Thomas Aquinas-Summa Theologica

Syal0om…

Thankyou bro

Wah… kq tdk ada tanggapan y… Apakah karena tdk bisa membaca via online… :coolsmiley:

oke sy c0ba upload kan bab pendahuluannya aja. :huh:
kl0 emank responnya bagus ntar sy c0ba upload bab selanjutny… :azn:

Silakan download pendahuluannya disini

btw bro bruce udah baca l0m…?
bro Siip mana niee kq g kliatan…?

First Part (Prima Pars)

The One God

The One God

EXISTENCE: The existence (2) of God.
ESSENCE: We cannot know what God is, but only what He is not. So to study Him, we study what He has not – such as composition and motion. His simplicity (3) or lack of composition. His perfection: and because everything in so far as it is perfect is called good, we shall speak of His goodness (6) – and goodness in general (5) – as well as His perfection (4). His infinity (7) and omnipresence (8). His immutability (9), and His eternity (10) following on His immutability. His unity (11). How God is known by us (12). The names of God (13).
OPERATIONS (INTELLECT): God’s knowledge (14). The ideas (15), which exist in His knowledge. Truth (16) in God, for knowledge is of things that are true. Falsity (17) in God. The life of God (18), since to understand belongs to living beings.
OPERATIONS (WILL): God’s will (19). In our own wills we find both the passions (such as joy and love), and the habits of the moral virtues (such as justice and fortitude). Hence we shall first consider the love (20) of God, and secondly His justice and mercy (21).
OPERATIONS (INTELLECT AND WILL): Providence (22), in respect to all created things; for in the science of morals, after the moral virtues themselves, comes the consideration of prudence, to which providence belongs. Predestination (23) and the book of life (24).
POWER: The power of God (25), the principle of the divine operation as proceeding to the exterior effect. The divine beatitude (26)

Article 1. Whether the existence of God is self-evident?

Objection 1. It seems that the existence of God is self-evident. Now those things are said to be self-evident to us the knowledge of which is naturally implanted in us, as we can see in regard to first principles. But as Damascene says (De Fide Orth. i, 1,3), “the knowledge of God is naturally implanted in all.” Therefore the existence of God is self-evident.

Objection 2. Further, those things are said to be self-evident which are known as soon as the terms are known, which the Philosopher (1 Poster. iii) says is true of the first principles of demonstration. Thus, when the nature of a whole and of a part is known, it is at once recognized that every whole is greater than its part. But as soon as the signification of the word “God” is understood, it is at once seen that God exists. For by this word is signified that thing than which nothing greater can be conceived. But that which exists actually and mentally is greater than that which exists only mentally. Therefore, since as soon as the word “God” is understood it exists mentally, it also follows that it exists actually. Therefore the proposition “God exists” is self-evident.

Objection 3. Further, the existence of truth is self-evident. For whoever denies the existence of truth grants that truth does not exist: and, if truth does not exist, then the proposition “Truth does not exist” is true: and if there is anything true, there must be truth. But God is truth itself: “I am the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6) Therefore “God exists” is self-evident.

On the contrary, No one can mentally admit the opposite of what is self-evident; as the Philosopher (Metaph. iv, lect. vi) states concerning the first principles of demonstration. But the opposite of the proposition “God is” can be mentally admitted: “The fool said in his heart, There is no God” (Psalm 52:1). Therefore, that God exists is not self-evident.

I answer that, A thing can be self-evident in either of two ways: on the one hand, self-evident in itself, though not to us; on the other, self-evident in itself, and to us. A proposition is self-evident because the predicate is included in the essence of the subject, as “Man is an animal,” for animal is contained in the essence of man. If, therefore the essence of the predicate and subject be known to all, the proposition will be self-evident to all; as is clear with regard to the first principles of demonstration, the terms of which are common things that no one is ignorant of, such as being and non-being, whole and part, and such like. If, however, there are some to whom the essence of the predicate and subject is unknown, the proposition will be self-evident in itself, but not to those who do not know the meaning of the predicate and subject of the proposition. Therefore, it happens, as Boethius says (Hebdom., the title of which is: “Whether all that is, is good”), “that there are some mental concepts self-evident only to the learned, as that incorporeal substances are not in space.” Therefore I say that this proposition, “God exists,” of itself is self-evident, for the predicate is the same as the subject, because God is His own existence as will be hereafter shown (3, 4). Now because we do not know the essence of God, the proposition is not self-evident to us; but needs to be demonstrated by things that are more known to us, though less known in their nature — namely, by effects.

Reply to Objection 1. To know that God exists in a general and confused way is implanted in us by nature, inasmuch as God is man’s beatitude. For man naturally desires happiness, and what is naturally desired by man must be naturally known to him. This, however, is not to know absolutely that God exists; just as to know that someone is approaching is not the same as to know that Peter is approaching, even though it is Peter who is approaching; for many there are who imagine that man’s perfect good which is happiness, consists in riches, and others in pleasures, and others in something else.

Reply to Objection 2. Perhaps not everyone who hears this word “God” understands it to signify something than which nothing greater can be thought, seeing that some have believed God to be a body. Yet, granted that everyone understands that by this word “God” is signified something than which nothing greater can be thought, nevertheless, it does not therefore follow that he understands that what the word signifies exists actually, but only that it exists mentally. Nor can it be argued that it actually exists, unless it be admitted that there actually exists something than which nothing greater can be thought; and this precisely is not admitted by those who hold that God does not exist.

Reply to Objection 3. The existence of truth in general is self-evident but the existence of a Primal Truth is not self-evident to us.

Article 2. Whether it can be demonstrated that God exists?

Objection 1. It seems that the existence of God cannot be demonstrated. For it is an article of faith that God exists. But what is of faith cannot be demonstrated, because a demonstration produces scientific knowledge; whereas faith is of the unseen (Hebrews 11:1). Therefore it cannot be demonstrated that God exists.

Objection 2. Further, the essence is the middle term of demonstration. But we cannot know in what God’s essence consists, but solely in what it does not consist; as Damascene says (De Fide Orth. i, 4). Therefore we cannot demonstrate that God exists.

Objection 3. Further, if the existence of God were demonstrated, this could only be from His effects. But His effects are not proportionate to Him, since He is infinite and His effects are finite; and between the finite and infinite there is no proportion. Therefore, since a cause cannot be demonstrated by an effect not proportionate to it, it seems that the existence of God cannot be demonstrated.

On the contrary, The Apostle says: “The invisible things of Him are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made” (Romans 1:20). But this would not be unless the existence of God could be demonstrated through the things that are made; for the first thing we must know of anything is whether it exists.

I answer that, Demonstration can be made in two ways: One is through the cause, and is called “a priori,” and this is to argue from what is prior absolutely. The other is through the effect, and is called a demonstration “a posteriori”; this is to argue from what is prior relatively only to us. When an effect is better known to us than its cause, from the effect we proceed to the knowledge of the cause. And from every effect the existence of its proper cause can be demonstrated, so long as its effects are better known to us; because since every effect depends upon its cause, if the effect exists, the cause must pre-exist. Hence the existence of God, in so far as it is not self-evident to us, can be demonstrated from those of His effects which are known to us.

Reply to Objection 1. The existence of God and other like truths about God, which can be known by natural reason, are not articles of faith, but are preambles to the articles; for faith presupposes natural knowledge, even as grace presupposes nature, and perfection supposes something that can be perfected. Nevertheless, there is nothing to prevent a man, who cannot grasp a proof, accepting, as a matter of faith, something which in itself is capable of being scientifically known and demonstrated.

Reply to Objection 2. When the existence of a cause is demonstrated from an effect, this effect takes the place of the definition of the cause in proof of the cause’s existence. This is especially the case in regard to God, because, in order to prove the existence of anything, it is necessary to accept as a middle term the meaning of the word, and not its essence, for the question of its essence follows on the question of its existence. Now the names given to God are derived from His effects; consequently, in demonstrating the existence of God from His effects, we may take for the middle term the meaning of the word “God”.

Reply to Objection 3. From effects not proportionate to the cause no perfect knowledge of that cause can be obtained. Yet from every effect the existence of the cause can be clearly demonstrated, and so we can demonstrate the existence of God from His effects; though from them we cannot perfectly know God as He is in His essence.

Article 3. Whether God exists?

Objection 1. It seems that God does not exist; because if one of two contraries be infinite, the other would be altogether destroyed. But the word “God” means that He is infinite goodness. If, therefore, God existed, there would be no evil discoverable; but there is evil in the world. Therefore God does not exist.

Objection 2. Further, it is superfluous to suppose that what can be accounted for by a few principles has been produced by many. But it seems that everything we see in the world can be accounted for by other principles, supposing God did not exist. For all natural things can be reduced to one principle which is nature; and all voluntary things can be reduced to one principle which is human reason, or will. Therefore there is no need to suppose God’s existence.

On the contrary, It is said in the person of God: “I am Who am.” (Exodus 3:14)

I answer that, The existence of God can be proved in five ways.

The first and more manifest way is the argument from motion. It is certain, and evident to our senses, that in the world some things are in motion. Now whatever is in motion is put in motion by another, for nothing can be in motion except it is in potentiality to that towards which it is in motion; whereas a thing moves inasmuch as it is in act. For motion is nothing else than the reduction of something from potentiality to actuality. But nothing can be reduced from potentiality to actuality, except by something in a state of actuality. Thus that which is actually hot, as fire, makes wood, which is potentially hot, to be actually hot, and thereby moves and changes it. Now it is not possible that the same thing should be at once in actuality and potentiality in the same respect, but only in different respects. For what is actually hot cannot simultaneously be potentially hot; but it is simultaneously potentially cold. It is therefore impossible that in the same respect and in the same way a thing should be both mover and moved, i.e. that it should move itself. Therefore, whatever is in motion must be put in motion by another. If that by which it is put in motion be itself put in motion, then this also must needs be put in motion by another, and that by another again. But this cannot go on to infinity, because then there would be no first mover, and, consequently, no other mover; seeing that subsequent movers move only inasmuch as they are put in motion by the first mover; as the staff moves only because it is put in motion by the hand. Therefore it is necessary to arrive at a first mover, put in motion by no other; and this everyone understands to be God.

The second way is from the nature of the efficient cause. In the world of sense we find there is an order of efficient causes. There is no case known (neither is it, indeed, possible) in which a thing is found to be the efficient cause of itself; for so it would be prior to itself, which is impossible. Now in efficient causes it is not possible to go on to infinity, because in all efficient causes following in order, the first is the cause of the intermediate cause, and the intermediate is the cause of the ultimate cause, whether the intermediate cause be several, or only one. Now to take away the cause is to take away the effect. Therefore, if there be no first cause among efficient causes, there will be no ultimate, nor any intermediate cause. But if in efficient causes it is possible to go on to infinity, there will be no first efficient cause, neither will there be an ultimate effect, nor any intermediate efficient causes; all of which is plainly false. Therefore it is necessary to admit a first efficient cause, to which everyone gives the name of God.

The third way is taken from possibility and necessity, and runs thus. We find in nature things that are possible to be and not to be, since they are found to be generated, and to corrupt, and consequently, they are possible to be and not to be. But it is impossible for these always to exist, for that which is possible not to be at some time is not. Therefore, if everything is possible not to be, then at one time there could have been nothing in existence. Now if this were true, even now there would be nothing in existence, because that which does not exist only begins to exist by something already existing. Therefore, if at one time nothing was in existence, it would have been impossible for anything to have begun to exist; and thus even now nothing would be in existence — which is absurd. Therefore, not all beings are merely possible, but there must exist something the existence of which is necessary. But every necessary thing either has its necessity caused by another, or not. Now it is impossible to go on to infinity in necessary things which have their necessity caused by another, as has been already proved in regard to efficient causes. Therefore we cannot but postulate the existence of some being having of itself its own necessity, and not receiving it from another, but rather causing in others their necessity. This all men speak of as God.

The fourth way is taken from the gradation to be found in things. Among beings there are some more and some less good, true, noble and the like. But “more” and “less” are predicated of different things, according as they resemble in their different ways something which is the maximum, as a thing is said to be hotter according as it more nearly resembles that which is hottest; so that there is something which is truest, something best, something noblest and, consequently, something which is uttermost being; for those things that are greatest in truth are greatest in being, as it is written in Metaph. ii. Now the maximum in any genus is the cause of all in that genus; as fire, which is the maximum heat, is the cause of all hot things. Therefore there must also be something which is to all beings the cause of their being, goodness, and every other perfection; and this we call God.

The fifth way is taken from the governance of the world. We see that things which lack intelligence, such as natural bodies, act for an end, and this is evident from their acting always, or nearly always, in the same way, so as to obtain the best result. Hence it is plain that not fortuitously, but designedly, do they achieve their end. Now whatever lacks intelligence cannot move towards an end, unless it be directed by some being endowed with knowledge and intelligence; as the arrow is shot to its mark by the archer. Therefore some intelligent being exists by whom all natural things are directed to their end; and this being we call God.

Reply to Objection 1. As Augustine says (Enchiridion xi): “Since God is the highest good, He would not allow any evil to exist in His works, unless His omnipotence and goodness were such as to bring good even out of evil.” This is part of the infinite goodness of God, that He should allow evil to exist, and out of it produce good.

Reply to Objection 2. Since nature works for a determinate end under the direction of a higher agent, whatever is done by nature must needs be traced back to God, as to its first cause. So also whatever is done voluntarily must also be traced back to some higher cause other than human reason or will, since these can change or fail; for all things that are changeable and capable of defect must be traced back to an immovable and self-necessary first principle, as was shown in the body of the Article.

Article 1. Whether God is a body?

Objection 1. It seems that God is a body. For a body is that which has the three dimensions. But Holy Scripture attributes the three dimensions to God, for it is written: “He is higher than Heaven, and what wilt thou do? He is deeper than Hell, and how wilt thou know? The measure of Him is longer than the earth and broader than the sea” (Job 11:8-9). Therefore God is a body.

Objection 2. Further, everything that has figure is a body, since figure is a quality of quantity. But God seems to have figure, for it is written: “Let us make man to our image and likeness” (Genesis 1:26). Now a figure is called an image, according to the text: “Who being the brightness of His glory and the figure,” i.e. the image, “of His substance” (Hebrews 1:3). Therefore God is a body.

Objection 3. Further, whatever has corporeal parts is a body. Now Scripture attributes corporeal parts to God. “Hast thou an arm like God?” (Job 40:4); and “The eyes of the Lord are upon the just” (Psalm 33:16); and “The right hand of the Lord hath wrought strength” (Psalm 117:16). Therefore God is a body.

Objection 4. Further, posture belongs only to bodies. But something which supposes posture is said of God in the Scriptures: “I saw the Lord sitting” (Isaiah 6:1), and “He standeth up to judge” (Isaiah 3:13). Therefore God is a body.

Objection 5. Further, only bodies or things corporeal can be a local term “wherefrom” or “whereto.” But in the Scriptures God is spoken of as a local term “whereto,” according to the words, “Come ye to Him and be enlightened” (Psalm 33:6), and as a term “wherefrom”: “All they that depart from Thee shall be written in the earth” (Jeremiah 17:13). Therefore God is a body.

On the contrary, It is written in the Gospel of St. John (John 4:24): “God is a spirit.”

I answer that, It is absolutely true that God is not a body; and this can be shown in three ways.

First, because no body is in motion unless it be put in motion, as is evident from induction. Now it has been already proved (2, 3), that God is the First Mover, and is Himself unmoved. Therefore it is clear that God is not a body.

Secondly, because the first being must of necessity be in act, and in no way in potentiality. For although in any single thing that passes from potentiality to actuality, the potentiality is prior in time to the actuality; nevertheless, absolutely speaking, actuality is prior to potentiality; for whatever is in potentiality can be reduced into actuality only by some being in actuality. Now it has been already proved that God is the First Being. It is therefore impossible that in God there should be any potentiality. But every body is in potentiality because the continuous, as such, is divisible to infinity; it is therefore impossible that God should be a body.

Thirdly, because God is the most noble of beings. Now it is impossible for a body to be the most noble of beings; for a body must be either animate or inanimate; and an animate body is manifestly nobler than any inanimate body. But an animate body is not animate precisely as body; otherwise all bodies would be animate. Therefore its animation depends upon some other thing, as our body depends for its animation on the soul. Hence that by which a body becomes animated must be nobler than the body. Therefore it is impossible that God should be a body.

Reply to Objection 1. As we have said above (Question 1, Article 9), Holy Writ puts before us spiritual and divine things under the comparison of corporeal things. Hence, when it attributes to God the three dimensions under the comparison of corporeal quantity, it implies His virtual quantity; thus, by depth, it signifies His power of knowing hidden things; by height, the transcendence of His excelling power; by length, the duration of His existence; by breadth, His act of love for all. Or, as says Dionysius (Div. Nom. ix), by the depth of God is meant the incomprehensibility of His essence; by length, the procession of His all-pervading power; by breadth, His overspreading all things, inasmuch as all things lie under His protection.

Reply to Objection 2. Man is said to be after the image of God, not as regards his body, but as regards that whereby he excels other animals. Hence, when it is said, “Let us make man to our image and likeness”, it is added, “And let him have dominion over the fishes of the sea” (Genesis 1:26). Now man excels all animals by his reason and intelligence; hence it is according to his intelligence and reason, which are incorporeal, that man is said to be according to the image of God.

Reply to Objection 3. Corporeal parts are attributed to God in Scripture on account of His actions, and this is owing to a certain parallel. For instance the act of the eye is to see; hence the eye attributed to God signifies His power of seeing intellectually, not sensibly; and so on with the other parts.

Reply to Objection 4. Whatever pertains to posture, also, is only attributed to God by some sort of parallel. He is spoken of as sitting, on account of His unchangeableness and dominion; and as standing, on account of His power of overcoming whatever withstands Him.

Reply to Objection 5. We draw near to God by no corporeal steps, since He is everywhere, but by the affections of our soul, and by the actions of that same soul do we withdraw from Him; thus, to draw near to or to withdraw signifies merely spiritual actions based on the metaphor of local motion.

Article 2. Whether God is composed of matter and form?

Objection 1. It seems that God is composed of matter and form. For whatever has a soul is composed of matter and form; since the soul is the form of the body. But Scripture attributes a soul to God; for it is mentioned in Hebrews (Hebrews 10:38), where God says: “But My just man liveth by faith; but if he withdraw himself, he shall not please My soul.” Therefore God is composed of matter and form.

Objection 2. Further, anger, joy and the like are passions of the composite. But these are attributed to God in Scripture: “The Lord was exceeding angry with His people” (Psalm 105:40). Therefore God is composed of matter and form.

Objection 3. Further, matter is the principle of individualization. But God seems to be individual, for He cannot be predicated of many. Therefore He is composed of matter and form.

On the contrary, Whatever is composed of matter and form is a body; for dimensive quantity is the first property of matter. But God is not a body as proved in the preceding Article; therefore He is not composed of matter and form.

I answer that, It is impossible that matter should exist in God.

First, because matter is in potentiality. But we have shown (I:2:3) that God is pure act, without any potentiality. Hence it is impossible that God should be composed of matter and form.

Secondly, because everything composed of matter and form owes its perfection and goodness to its form; therefore its goodness is participated, inasmuch as matter participates the form. Now the first good and the best–viz. God–is not a participated good, because the essential good is prior to the participated good. Hence it is impossible that God should be composed of matter and form.

Thirdly, because every agent acts by its form; hence the manner in which it has its form is the manner in which it is an agent. Therefore whatever is primarily and essentially an agent must be primarily and essentially form. Now God is the first agent, since He is the first efficient cause. He is therefore of His essence a form; and not composed of matter and form.

Reply to Objection 1. A soul is attributed to God because His acts resemble the acts of a soul; for, that we will anything, is due to our soul. Hence what is pleasing to His will is said to be pleasing to His soul.

Reply to Objection 2. Anger and the like are attributed to God on account of a similitude of effect. Thus, because to punish is properly the act of an angry man, God’s punishment is metaphorically spoken of as His anger.

Reply to Objection 3. Forms which can be received in matter are individualized by matter, which cannot be in another as in a subject since it is the first underlying subject; although form of itself, unless something else prevents it, can be received by many. But that form which cannot be received in matter, but is self-subsisting, is individualized precisely because it cannot be received in a subject; and such a form is God. Hence it does not follow that matter exists in God.

Article 3. Whether God is the same as His essence or nature?

Objection 1. It seems that God is not the same as His essence or nature. For nothing can be in itself. But the substance or nature of God–i.e. the Godhead–is said to be in God. Therefore it seems that God is not the same as His essence or nature.

Objection 2. Further, the effect is assimilated to its cause; for every agent produces its like. But in created things the “suppositum” is not identical with its nature; for a man is not the same as his humanity. Therefore God is not the same as His Godhead.

On the contrary, It is said of God that He is life itself, and not only that He is a living thing: “I am the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6). Now the relation between Godhead and God is the same as the relation between life and a living thing. Therefore God is His very Godhead.

I answer that, God is the same as His essence or nature. To understand this, it must be noted that in things composed of matter and form, the nature or essence must differ from the “suppositum,” because the essence or nature connotes only what is included in the definition of the species; as, humanity connotes all that is included in the definition of man, for it is by this that man is man, and it is this that humanity signifies, that, namely, whereby man is man. Now individual matter, with all the individualizing accidents, is not included in the definition of the species. For this particular flesh, these bones, this blackness or whiteness, etc., are not included in the definition of a man. Therefore this flesh, these bones, and the accidental qualities distinguishing this particular matter, are not included in humanity; and yet they are included in the thing which is man. Hence the thing which is a man has something more in it than has humanity. Consequently humanity and a man are not wholly identical; but humanity is taken to mean the formal part of a man, because the principles whereby a thing is defined are regarded as the formal constituent in regard to the individualizing matter. On the other hand, in things not composed of matter and form, in which individualization is not due to individual matter–that is to say, to “this” matter–the very forms being individualized of themselves–it is necessary the forms themselves should be subsisting “supposita.” Therefore “suppositum” and nature in them are identified. Since God then is not composed of matter and form, He must be His own Godhead, His own Life, and whatever else is thus predicated of Him.

Reply to Objection 1. We can speak of simple things only as though they were like the composite things from which we derive our knowledge. Therefore in speaking of God, we use concrete nouns to signify His subsistence, because with us only those things subsist which are composite; and we use abstract nouns to signify His simplicity. In saying therefore that Godhead, or life, or the like are in God, we indicate the composite way in which our intellect understands, but not that there is any composition in God.

Reply to Objection 2. The effects of God do not imitate Him perfectly, but only as far as they are able; and the imitation is here defective, precisely because what is simple and one, can only be represented by divers things; consequently, composition is accidental to them, and therefore, in them “suppositum” is not the same as nature.

Article 4. Whether essence and existence are the same in God?

Objection 1. It seems that essence and existence are not the same in God. For if it be so, then the divine being has nothing added to it. Now being to which no addition is made is universal being which is predicated of all things. Therefore it follows that God is being in general which can be predicated of everything. But this is false: “For men gave the incommunicable name to stones and wood” (Wisdom 14:21). Therefore God’s existence is not His essence.

Objection 2. Further, we can know “whether” God exists as said above (I:2:2); but we cannot know “what” He is. Therefore God’s existence is not the same as His essence–that is, as His quiddity or nature.

On the contrary, Hilary says (Trin. vii): “In God existence is not an accidental quality, but subsisting truth.” Therefore what subsists in God is His existence.

I answer that, God is not only His own essence, as shown in the preceding article, but also His own existence. This may be shown in several ways.

First, whatever a thing has besides its essence must be caused either by the constituent principles of that essence (like a property that necessarily accompanies the species–as the faculty of laughing is proper to a man–and is caused by the constituent principles of the species), or by some exterior agent–as heat is caused in water by fire. Therefore, if the existence of a thing differs from its essence, this existence must be caused either by some exterior agent or by its essential principles. Now it is impossible for a thing’s existence to be caused by its essential constituent principles, for nothing can be the sufficient cause of its own existence, if its existence is caused. Therefore that thing, whose existence differs from its essence, must have its existence caused by another. But this cannot be true of God; because we call God the first efficient cause. Therefore it is impossible that in God His existence should differ from His essence.

Secondly, existence is that which makes every form or nature actual; for goodness and humanity are spoken of as actual, only because they are spoken of as existing. Therefore existence must be compared to essence, if the latter is a distinct reality, as actuality to potentiality. Therefore, since in God there is no potentiality, as shown above (Article 1), it follows that in Him essence does not differ from existence. Therefore His essence is His existence.

Thirdly, because, just as that which has fire, but is not itself fire, is on fire by participation; so that which has existence but is not existence, is a being by participation. But God is His own essence, as shown above (Article 3) if, therefore, He is not His own existence He will be not essential, but participated being. He will not therefore be the first being–which is absurd. Therefore God is His own existence, and not merely His own essence.

Reply to Objection 1. A thing that has nothing added to it can be of two kinds. Either its essence precludes any addition; thus, for example, it is of the essence of an irrational animal to be without reason. Or we may understand a thing to have nothing added to it, inasmuch as its essence does not require that anything should be added to it; thus the genus animal is without reason, because it is not of the essence of animal in general to have reason; but neither is it to lack reason. And so the divine being has nothing added to it in the first sense; whereas universal being has nothing added to it in the second sense.

Reply to Objection 2. “To be” can mean either of two things. It may mean the act of essence, or it may mean the composition of a proposition effected by the mind in joining a predicate to a subject. Taking “to be” in the first sense, we cannot understand God’s existence nor His essence; but only in the second sense. We know that this proposition which we form about God when we say “God is,” is true; and this we know from His effects (I:2:2).

Article 5. Whether God is contained in a genus?

Objection 1. It seems that God is contained in a genus. For a substance is a being that subsists of itself. But this is especially true of God. Therefore God is in a genus of substance.

Objection 2. Further, nothing can be measured save by something of its own genus; as length is measured by length and numbers by number. But God is the measure of all substances, as the Commentator shows (Metaph. x). Therefore God is in the genus of substance.

On the contrary, In the mind, genus is prior to what it contains. But nothing is prior to God either really or mentally. Therefore God is not in any genus.

I answer that, A thing can be in a genus in two ways; either absolutely and properly, as a species contained under a genus; or as being reducible to it, as principles and privations. For example, a point and unity are reduced to the genus of quantity, as its principles; while blindness and all other privations are reduced to the genus of habit. But in neither way is God in a genus. That He cannot be a species of any genus may be shown in three ways.

First, because a species is constituted of genus and difference. Now that from which the difference constituting the species is derived, is always related to that from which the genus is derived, as actuality is related to potentiality. For animal is derived from sensitive nature, by concretion as it were, for that is animal, which has a sensitive nature. Rational being, on the other hand, is derived from intellectual nature, because that is rational, which has an intellectual nature, and intelligence is compared to sense, as actuality is to potentiality. The same argument holds good in other things. Hence since in God actuality is not added to potentiality, it is impossible that He should be in any genus as a species.

Secondly, since the existence of God is His essence, if God were in any genus, He would be the genus “being”, because, since genus is predicated as an essential it refers to the essence of a thing. But the Philosopher has shown (Metaph. iii) that being cannot be a genus, for every genus has differences distinct from its generic essence. Now no difference can exist distinct from being; for non-being cannot be a difference. It follows then that God is not in a genus.

Thirdly, because all in one genus agree in the quiddity or essence of the genus which is predicated of them as an essential, but they differ in their existence. For the existence of man and of horse is not the same; as also of this man and that man: thus in every member of a genus, existence and quiddity–i.e. essence–must differ. But in God they do not differ, as shown in the preceding article. Therefore it is plain that God is not in a genus as if He were a species. From this it is also plain that He has no genus nor difference, nor can there be any definition of Him; nor, save through His effects, a demonstration of Him: for a definition is from genus and difference; and the mean of a demonstration is a definition. That God is not in a genus, as reducible to it as its principle, is clear from this, that a principle reducible to any genus does not extend beyond that genus; as, a point is the principle of continuous quantity alone; and unity, of discontinuous quantity. But God is the principle of all being. Therefore He is not contained in any genus as its principle.

Reply to Objection 1. The word substance signifies not only what exists of itself–for existence cannot of itself be a genus, as shown in the body of the article; but, it also signifies an essence that has the property of existing in this way–namely, of existing of itself; this existence, however, is not its essence. Thus it is clear that God is not in the genus of substance.

Reply to Objection 2. This objection turns upon proportionate measure which must be homogeneous with what is measured. Now, God is not a measure proportionate to anything. Still, He is called the measure of all things, in the sense that everything has being only according as it resembles Him.

Article 6. Whether in God there are any accidents?

Objection 1. It seems that there are accidents in God. For substance cannot be an accident, as Aristotle says (Phys. i). Therefore that which is an accident in one, cannot, in another, be a substance. Thus it is proved that heat cannot be the substantial form of fire, because it is an accident in other things. But wisdom, virtue, and the like, which are accidents in us, are attributes of God. Therefore in God there are accidents.

Objection 2. Further, in every genus there is a first principle. But there are many “genera” of accidents. If, therefore, the primal members of these genera are not in God, there will be many primal beings other than God–which is absurd.

On the contrary, Every accident is in a subject. But God cannot be a subject, for “no simple form can be a subject”, as Boethius says (De Trin.). Therefore in God there cannot be any accident.

I answer that, From all we have said, it is clear there can be no accident in God.

First, because a subject is compared to its accidents as potentiality to actuality; for a subject is in some sense made actual by its accidents. But there can be no potentiality in God, as was shown (2, 3).

Secondly, because God is His own existence; and as Boethius says (Hebdom.), although every essence may have something superadded to it, this cannot apply to absolute being: thus a heated substance can have something extraneous to heat added to it, as whiteness, nevertheless absolute heat can have nothing else than heat.

Thirdly, because what is essential is prior to what is accidental. Whence as God is absolute primal being, there can be in Him nothing accidental. Neither can He have any essential accidents (as the capability of laughing is an essential accident of man), because such accidents are caused by the constituent principles of the subject. Now there can be nothing caused in God, since He is the first cause. Hence it follows that there is no accident in God.

Reply to Objection 1. Virtue and wisdom are not predicated of God and of us univocally. Hence it does not follow that there are accidents in God as there are in us.

Reply to Objection 2. Since substance is prior to its accidents, the principles of accidents are reducible to the principles of the substance as to that which is prior; although God is not first as if contained in the genus of substance; yet He is first in respect to all being, outside of every genus.

Article 7. Whether God is altogether simple?

Objection 1. It seems that God is not altogether simple. For whatever is from God must imitate Him. Thus from the first being are all beings; and from the first good is all good. But in the things which God has made, nothing is altogether simple. Therefore neither is God altogether simple.

Objection 2. Further, whatever is best must be attributed to God. But with us that which is composite is better than that which is simple; thus, chemical compounds are better than simple elements, and animals than the parts that compose them. Therefore it cannot be said that God is altogether simple.

On the contrary, Augustine says (De Trin. iv, 6,7): “God is truly and absolutely simple.”

I answer that, The absolute simplicity of God may be shown in many ways.

First, from the previous articles of this question. For there is neither composition of quantitative parts in God, since He is not a body; nor composition of matter and form; nor does His nature differ from His “suppositum”; nor His essence from His existence; neither is there in Him composition of genus and difference, nor of subject and accident. Therefore, it is clear that God is nowise composite, but is altogether simple.

Secondly, because every composite is posterior to its component parts, and is dependent on them; but God is the first being, as shown above (Question 2, Article 3).

Thirdly, because every composite has a cause, for things in themselves different cannot unite unless something causes them to unite. But God is uncaused, as shown above (Question 2, Article 3), since He is the first efficient cause.

Fourthly, because in every composite there must be potentiality and actuality; but this does not apply to God; for either one of the parts actuates another, or at least all the parts are potential to the whole.

Fifthly, because nothing composite can be predicated of any single one of its parts. And this is evident in a whole made up of dissimilar parts; for no part of a man is a man, nor any of the parts of the foot, a foot. But in wholes made up of similar parts, although something which is predicated of the whole may be predicated of a part (as a part of the air is air, and a part of water, water), nevertheless certain things are predicable of the whole which cannot be predicated of any of the parts; for instance, if the whole volume of water is two cubits, no part of it can be two cubits. Thus in every composite there is something which is not it itself. But, even if this could be said of whatever has a form, viz. that it has something which is not it itself, as in a white object there is something which does not belong to the essence of white; nevertheless in the form itself, there is nothing besides itself. And so, since God is absolute form, or rather absolute being, He can be in no way composite. Hilary implies this argument, when he says (De Trin. vii): “God, Who is strength, is not made up of things that are weak; nor is He Who is light, composed of things that are dim.”

Reply to Objection 1. Whatever is from God imitates Him, as caused things imitate the first cause. But it is of the essence of a thing to be in some sort composite; because at least its existence differs from its essence, as will be shown hereafter, (4, 3).

Reply to Objection 2. With us composite things are better than simple things, because the perfections of created goodness cannot be found in one simple thing, but in many things. But the perfection of divine goodness is found in one simple thing (4, 1 and 6, 2).

Article 8. Whether God enters into the composition of other things?

Objection 1. It seems that God enters into the composition of other things, for Dionysius says (Coel. Hier. iv): “The being of all things is that which is above being–the Godhead.” But the being of all things enters into the composition of everything. Therefore God enters into the composition of other things.

Objection 2. Further, God is a form; for Augustine says (De Verb. Dom., [Serm. xxxviii) that, “the word of God, which is God, is an uncreated form.” But a form is part of a compound. Therefore God is part of some compound.

Objection 3. Further, whatever things exist, in no way differing from each other, are the same. But God and primary matter exist, and in no way differ from each other. Therefore they are absolutely the same. But primary matter enters into the composition things. Therefore also does God. Proof of the minor–whatever things differ, they differ by some differences, and therefore must be composite. But God and primary matter are altogether simple. Therefore they nowise differ from each other.

On the contrary, Dionysius says (Div. Nom. ii): “There can be no touching Him,” i.e. God, “nor any other union with Him by mingling part with part.”

Further, the first cause rules all things without commingling with them, as the Philosopher says (De Causis).

I answer that, On this point there have been three errors. Some have affirmed that God is the world-soul, as is clear from Augustine (De Civ. Dei vii, 6). This is practically the same as the opinion of those who assert that God is the soul of the highest heaven. Again, others have said that God is the formal principle of all things; and this was the theory of the Almaricians. The third error is that of David of Dinant, who most absurdly taught that God was primary matter. Now all these contain manifest untruth; since it is not possible for God to enter into the composition of anything, either as a formal or a material principle.

First, because God is the first efficient cause. Now the efficient cause is not identical numerically with the form of the thing caused, but only specifically: for man begets man. But primary matter can be neither numerically nor specifically identical with an efficient cause; for the former is merely potential, while the latter is actual.

Secondly, because, since God is the first efficient cause, to act belongs to Him primarily and essentially. But that which enters into composition with anything does not act primarily and essentially, but rather the composite so acts; for the hand does not act, but the man by his hand; and, fire warms by its heat. Hence God cannot be part of a compound.

Thirdly, because no part of a compound can be absolutely primal among beings–not even matter, nor form, though they are the primal parts of every compound. For matter is merely potential; and potentiality is absolutely posterior to actuality, as is clear from the foregoing (3, 1): while a form which is part of a compound is a participated form; and as that which participates is posterior to that which is essential, so likewise is that which is participated; as fire in ignited objects is posterior to fire that is essentially such. Now it has been proved that God is absolutely primal being (2, 3).

Reply to Objection 1. The Godhead is called the being of all things, as their efficient and exemplar cause, but not as being their essence.

Reply to Objection 2. The Word is an exemplar form; but not a form that is part of a compound.

Reply to Objection 3. Simple things do not differ by added differences–for this is the property of compounds. Thus man and horse differ by their differences, rational and irrational; which differences, however, do not differ from each other by other differences. Hence, to be quite accurate, it is better to say that they are, not different, but diverse. Hence, according to the Philosopher (Metaph. x), “things which are diverse are absolutely distinct, but things which are different differ by something.” Therefore, strictly speaking, primary matter and God do not differ, but are by their very being, diverse. Hence it does not follow they are the same.

Article 1. Whether God is perfect?

Objection 1. It seems that perfection does not belong to God. For we say a thing is perfect if it is completely made. But it does not befit God to be made. Therefore He is not perfect.

Objection 2. Further, God is the first beginning of things. But the beginnings of things seem to be imperfect, as seed is the beginning of animal and vegetable life. Therefore God is imperfect.

Objection 3. Further, as shown above (Question 3, Article 4), God’s essence is existence. But existence seems most imperfect, since it is most universal and receptive of all modification. Therefore God is imperfect.

On the contrary, It is written: “Be you perfect as also your heavenly Father is perfect” (Matthew 5:48).

I answer that, As the Philosopher relates (Metaph. xii), some ancient philosophers, namely, the Pythagoreans and Leucippus, did not predicate “best” and “most perfect” of the first principle. The reason was that the ancient philosophers considered only a material principle; and a material principle is most imperfect. For since matter as such is merely potential, the first material principle must be simply potential, and thus most imperfect. Now God is the first principle, not material, but in the order of efficient cause, which must be most perfect. For just as matter, as such, is merely potential, an agent, as such, is in the state of actuality. Hence, the first active principle must needs be most actual, and therefore most perfect; for a thing is perfect in proportion to its state of actuality, because we call that perfect which lacks nothing of the mode of its perfection.

Reply to Objection 1. As Gregory says (Moral. v, 26,29): “Though our lips can only stammer, we yet chant the high things of God.” For that which is not made is improperly called perfect. Nevertheless because created things are then called perfect, when from potentiality they are brought into actuality, this word “perfect” signifies whatever is not wanting in actuality, whether this be by way of perfection or not.

Reply to Objection 2. The material principle which with us is found to be imperfect, cannot be absolutely primal; but must be preceded by something perfect. For seed, though it be the principle of animal life reproduced through seed, has previous to it, the animal or plant from which is came. Because, previous to that which is potential, must be that which is actual; since a potential being can only be reduced into act by some being already actual.

Reply to Objection 3. Existence is the most perfect of all things, for it is compared to all things as that by which they are made actual; for nothing has actuality except so far as it exists. Hence existence is that which actuates all things, even their forms. Therefore it is not compared to other things as the receiver is to the received; but rather as the received to the receiver. When therefore I speak of the existence of man, or horse, or anything else, existence is considered a formal principle, and as something received; and not as that which exists.

Article 2. Whether the perfections of all things are in God?

Objection 1. It seems that the perfections of all things are not in God. For God is simple, as shown above (Question 3, Article 7); whereas the perfections of things are many and diverse. Therefore the perfections of all things are not in God.

Objection 2. Further, opposites cannot coexist. Now the perfections of things are opposed to each other, for each thing is perfected by its specific difference. But the differences by which “genera” are divided, and “species” constituted, are opposed to each other. Therefore because opposites cannot coexist in the same subject, it seems that the perfections of all things are not in God.

Objection 3. Further, a living thing is more perfect than what merely exists; and an intelligent thing than what merely lives. Therefore life is more perfect than existence; and knowledge than life. But the essence of God is existence itself. Therefore He has not the perfections of life, and knowledge, and other similar perfections.

On the contrary, Dionysius says (Div. Nom. v) that “God in His one existence prepossesses all things.”

I answer that, All created perfections are in God. Hence He is spoken of as universally perfect, because He lacks not (says the Commentator, Metaph. v) any excellence which may be found in any genus. This may be seen from two considerations.

First, because whatever perfection exists in an effect must be found in the effective cause: either in the same formality, if it is a univocal agent–as when man reproduces man; or in a more eminent degree, if it is an equivocal agent–thus in the sun is the likeness of whatever is generated by the sun’s power. Now it is plain that the effect pre-exists virtually in the efficient cause: and although to pre-exist in the potentiality of a material cause is to pre-exist in a more imperfect way, since matter as such is imperfect, and an agent as such is perfect; still to pre-exist virtually in the efficient cause is to pre-exist not in a more imperfect, but in a more perfect way. Since therefore God is the first effective cause of things, the perfections of all things must pre-exist in God in a more eminent way. Dionysius implies the same line of argument by saying of God (Div. Nom. v): “It is not that He is this and not that, but that He is all, as the cause of all.”

Secondly, from what has been already proved, God is existence itself, of itself subsistent (3, 4). Consequently, He must contain within Himself the whole perfection of being. For it is clear that if some hot thing has not the whole perfection of heat, this is because heat is not participated in its full perfection; but if this heat were self-subsisting, nothing of the virtue of heat would be wanting to it. Since therefore God is subsisting being itself, nothing of the perfection of being can be wanting to Him. Now all created perfections are included in the perfection of being; for things are perfect, precisely so far as they have being after some fashion. It follows therefore that the perfection of no one thing is wanting to God. This line of argument, too, is implied by Dionysius (Div. Nom. v), when he says that, “God exists not in any single mode, but embraces all being within Himself, absolutely, without limitation, uniformly;” and afterwards he adds that, “He is the very existence to subsisting things.”

Reply to Objection 1. Even as the sun (as Dionysius remarks, (Div. Nom. v), while remaining one and shining uniformly, contains within itself first and uniformly the substances of sensible things, and many and diverse qualities; “a fortiori” should all things in a kind of natural unity pre-exist in the cause of all things; and thus things diverse and in themselves opposed to each other, pre-exist in God as one, without injury to His simplicity. This suffices for the Reply to the Second Objection.

Reply to Objection 3. The same Dionysius says (Div. Nom. v) that, although existence is more perfect than life, and life than wisdom, if they are considered as distinguished in idea; nevertheless, a living thing is more perfect than what merely exists, because living things also exist and intelligent things both exist and live. Although therefore existence does not include life and wisdom, because that which participates in existence need not participate in every mode of existence; nevertheless God’s existence includes in itself life and wisdom, because nothing of the perfection of being can be wanting to Him who is subsisting being itself.

Article 3. Whether any creature can be like God?

Objection 1. It seems that no creature can be like God. For it is written (Psalm 85:8): “There is none among the gods like unto Thee, O Lord.” But of all creatures the most excellent are those which are called participation gods. Therefore still less can other creatures be said to be like God.

Objection 2. Further, likeness implies comparison. But there can be no comparison between things in a different “genus.” Therefore neither can there be any likeness. Thus we do not say that sweetness is like whiteness. But no creature is in the same “genus” as God: since God is no “genus,” as shown above (Question 3, Article 5). Therefore no creature is like God.

Objection 3. Further, we speak of those things as like which agree in form. But nothing can agree with God in form; for, save in God alone, essence and existence differ. Therefore no creature can be like to God.

Objection 4. Further, among like things there is mutual likeness; for like is like to like. If therefore any creature is like God, God will be like some creature, which is against what is said by Isaias: “To whom have you likened God?” (Isaiah 40:18).

On the contrary, It is written: “Let us make man to our image and likeness” (Genesis 1:26), and: “When He shall appear we shall be like to Him” (1 John 3:2).

I answer that, Since likeness is based upon agreement or communication in form, it varies according to the many modes of communication in form. Some things are said to be like, which communicate in the same form according to the same formality, and according to the same mode; and these are said to be not merely like, but equal in their likeness; as two things equally white are said to be alike in whiteness; and this is the most perfect likeness. In another way, we speak of things as alike which communicate in form according to the same formality, though not according to the same measure, but according to more or less, as something less white is said to be like another thing more white; and this is imperfect likeness. In a third way some things are said to be alike which communicate in the same form, but not according to the same formality; as we see in non-univocal agents. For since every agent reproduces itself so far as it is an agent, and everything acts according to the manner of its form, the effect must in some way resemble the form of the agent. If therefore the agent is contained in the same species as its effect, there will be a likeness in form between that which makes and that which is made, according to the same formality of the species; as man reproduces man. If, however, the agent and its effect are not contained in the same species, there will be a likeness, but not according to the formality of the same species; as things generated by the sun’s heat may be in some sort spoken of as like the sun, not as though they received the form of the sun in its specific likeness, but in its generic likeness. Therefore if there is an agent not contained in any “genus,” its effect will still more distantly reproduce the form of the agent, not, that is, so as to participate in the likeness of the agent’s form according to the same specific or generic formality, but only according to some sort of analogy; as existence is common to all. In this way all created things, so far as they are beings, are like God as the first and universal principle of all being.

Reply to Objection 1. As Dionysius says (Div. Nom. ix), when Holy Writ declares that nothing is like God, it does not mean to deny all likeness to Him. For, “the same things can be like and unlike to God: like, according as they imitate Him, as far as He, Who is not perfectly imitable, can be imitated; unlike according as they fall short of their cause,” not merely in intensity and remission, as that which is less white falls short of that which is more white; but because they are not in agreement, specifically or generically.

Reply to Objection 2. God is not related to creatures as though belonging to a different “genus,” but as transcending every “genus,” and as the principle of all “genera.”

Reply to Objection 3. Likeness of creatures to God is not affirmed on account of agreement in form according to the formality of the same genus or species, but solely according to analogy, inasmuch as God is essential being, whereas other things are beings by participation.

Reply to Objection 4. Although it may be admitted that creatures are in some sort like God, it must nowise be admitted that God is like creatures; because, as Dionysius says (Div. Nom. ix): “A mutual likeness may be found between things of the same order, but not between a cause and that which is caused.” For, we say that a statue is like a man, but not conversely; so also a creature can be spoken of as in some sort like God; but not that God is like a creature.

Article 1. Whether goodness differs really from being?

Objection 1. It seems that goodness differs really from being. For Boethius says (De Hebdom.): “I perceive that in nature the fact that things are good is one thing: that they are is another.” Therefore goodness and being really differ.

Objection 2. Further, nothing can be its own form. “But that is called good which has the form of being”, according to the commentary on De Causis. Therefore goodness differs really from being.

Objection 3. Further, goodness can be more or less. But being cannot be more or less. Therefore goodness differs really from being.

On the contrary, Augustine says (De Doctr. Christ. i, 42) that, “inasmuch as we exist we are good.”

I answer that, Goodness and being are really the same, and differ only in idea; which is clear from the following argument. The essence of goodness consists in this, that it is in some way desirable. Hence the Philosopher says (Ethic. i): “Goodness is what all desire.” Now it is clear that a thing is desirable only in so far as it is perfect; for all desire their own perfection. But everything is perfect so far as it is actual. Therefore it is clear that a thing is perfect so far as it exists; for it is existence that makes all things actual, as is clear from the foregoing (3, 4; 4, 1). Hence it is clear that goodness and being are the same really. But goodness presents the aspect of desirableness, which being does not present.

Reply to Objection 1. Although goodness and being are the same really, nevertheless since they differ in thought, they are not predicated of a thing absolutely in the same way. Since being properly signifies that something actually is, and actuality properly correlates to potentiality; a thing is, in consequence, said simply to have being, accordingly as it is primarily distinguished from that which is only in potentiality; and this is precisely each thing’s substantial being. Hence by its substantial being, everything is said to have being simply; but by any further actuality it is said to have being relatively. Thus to be white implies relative being, for to be white does not take a thing out of simply potential being; because only a thing that actually has being can receive this mode of being. But goodness signifies perfection which is desirable; and consequently of ultimate perfection. Hence that which has ultimate perfection is said to be simply good; but that which has not the ultimate perfection it ought to have (although, in so far as it is at all actual, it has some perfection), is not said to be perfect simply nor good simply, but only relatively. In this way, therefore, viewed in its primal (i.e. substantial) being a thing is said to be simply, and to be good relatively (i.e. in so far as it has being) but viewed in its complete actuality, a thing is said to be relatively, and to be good simply. Hence the saying of Boethius (De Hebrom.), “I perceive that in nature the fact that things are good is one thing; that they are is another,” is to be referred to a thing’s goodness simply, and having being simply. Because, regarded in its primal actuality, a thing simply exists; and regarded in its complete actuality, it is good simply–in such sort that even in its primal actuality, it is in some sort good, and even in its complete actuality, it in some sort has being.

Reply to Objection 2. Goodness is a form so far as absolute goodness signifies complete actuality.

Reply to Objection 3. Again, goodness is spoken of as more or less according to a thing’s superadded actuality, for example, as to knowledge or virtue.

Article 2. Whether goodness is prior in idea to being?

Objection 1. It seems that goodness is prior in idea to being. For names are arranged according to the arrangement of the things signified by the names. But Dionysius (Div. Nom. iii) assigned the first place, amongst the other names of God, to His goodness rather than to His being. Therefore in idea goodness is prior to being.

Objection 2. Further, that which is the more extensive is prior in idea. But goodness is more extensive than being, because, as Dionysius notes (Div. Nom. v), “goodness extends to things both existing and non-existing; whereas existence extends to existing things alone.” Therefore goodness is in idea prior to being.

Objection 3. Further, what is the more universal is prior in idea. But goodness seems to be more universal than being, since goodness has the aspect of desirable; whereas to some non-existence is desirable; for it is said of Judas: “It were better for him, if that man had not been born” (Matthew 26:24). Therefore in idea goodness is prior to being.

Objection 4. Further, not only is existence desirable, but life, knowledge, and many other things besides. Thus it seems that existence is a particular appetible, and goodness a universal appetible. Therefore, absolutely, goodness is prior in idea to being.

On the contrary, It is said by Aristotle (De Causis) that “the first of created things is being.”

I answer that, In idea being is prior to goodness. For the meaning signified by the name of a thing is that which the mind conceives of the thing and intends by the word that stands for it. Therefore, that is prior in idea, which is first conceived by the intellect. Now the first thing conceived by the intellect is being; because everything is knowable only inasmuch as it is in actuality. Hence, being is the proper object of the intellect, and is primarily intelligible; as sound is that which is primarily audible. Therefore in idea being is prior to goodness.

Reply to Objection 1. Dionysius discusses the Divine Names (Div. Nom. i, iii) as implying some causal relation in God; for we name God, as he says, from creatures, as a cause from its effects. But goodness, since it has the aspect of desirable, implies the idea of a final cause, the causality of which is first among causes, since an agent does not act except for some end; and by an agent matter is moved to its form. Hence the end is called the cause of causes. Thus goodness, as a cause, is prior to being, as is the end to the form. Therefore among the names signifying the divine causality, goodness precedes being. Again, according to the Platonists, who, through not distinguishing primary matter from privation, said that matter was non-being, goodness is more extensively participated than being; for primary matter participates in goodness as tending to it, for all seek their like; but it does not participate in being, since it is presumed to be non-being. Therefore Dionysius says that “goodness extends to non-existence” (Div. Nom. v).

Reply to Objection 2. The same solution is applied to this objection. Or it may be said that goodness extends to existing and non-existing things, not so far as it can be predicated of them, but so far as it can cause them – if, indeed, by non-existence we understand not simply those things which do not exist, but those which are potential, and not actual. For goodness has the aspect of the end, in which not only actual things find their completion, but also towards which tend even those things which are not actual, but merely potential. Now being implies the habitude of a formal cause only, either inherent or exemplar; and its causality does not extend save to those things which are actual.

Reply to Objection 3. Non-being is desirable, not of itself, but only relatively–i.e. inasmuch as the removal of an evil, which can only be removed by non-being, is desirable. Now the removal of an evil cannot be desirable, except so far as this evil deprives a thing of some being. Therefore being is desirable of itself; and non-being only relatively, inasmuch as one seeks some mode of being of which one cannot bear to be deprived; thus even non-being can be spoken of as relatively good.

Reply to Objection 4. Life, wisdom, and the like, are desirable only so far as they are actual. Hence, in each one of them some sort of being is desired. And thus nothing can be desired except being; and consequently nothing is good except being.

Article 3. Whether every being is good?

Objection 1. It seems that not every being is good. For goodness is something superadded to being, as is clear from 1. But whatever is added to being limits it; as substance, quantity, quality, etc. Therefore goodness limits being. Therefore not every being is good.

Objection 2. Further, no evil is good: “Woe to you that call evil good and good evil” (Isaiah 5:20). But some things are called evil. Therefore not every being is good.

Objection 3. Further, goodness implies desirability. Now primary matter does not imply desirability, but rather that which desires. Therefore primary matter does not contain the formality of goodness. Therefore not every being is good.

Objection 4. Further, the Philosopher notes (Metaph. iii) that “in mathematics goodness does not exist.” But mathematics are entities; otherwise there would be no science of mathematics. Therefore not every being is good.

On the contrary, Every being that is not God is God’s creature. Now every creature of God is good (1 Timothy 4:4): and God is the greatest good. Therefore every being is good.

I answer that, Every being, as being, is good. For all being, as being, has actuality and is in some way perfect; since every act implies some sort of perfection; and perfection implies desirability and goodness, as is clear from 1. Hence it follows that every being as such is good.

Reply to Objection 1. Substance, quantity, quality, and everything included in them, limit being by applying it to some essence or nature. Now in this sense, goodness does not add anything to being beyond the aspect of desirability and perfection, which is also proper to being, whatever kind of nature it may be. Hence goodness does not limit being.

Reply to Objection 2. No being can be spoken of as evil, formally as being, but only so far as it lacks being. Thus a man is said to be evil, because he lacks some virtue; and an eye is said to be evil, because it lacks the power to see well.

Reply to Objection 3. As primary matter has only potential being, so it is only potentially good. Although, according to the Platonists, primary matter may be said to be a non-being on account of the privation attaching to it, nevertheless, it does participate to a certain extent in goodness, viz. by its relation to, or aptitude for, goodness. Consequently, to be desirable is not its property, but to desire.

Reply to Objection 4. Mathematical entities do not subsist as realities; because they would be in some sort good if they subsisted; but they have only logical existence, inasmuch as they are abstracted from motion and matter; thus they cannot have the aspect of an end, which itself has the aspect of moving another. Nor is it repugnant that there should be in some logical entity neither goodness nor form of goodness; since the idea of being is prior to the idea of goodness, as was said in the preceding article.

Article 4. Whether goodness has the aspect of a final cause?

Objection 1. It seems that goodness has not the aspect of a final cause, but rather of the other causes. For, as Dionysius says (Div. Nom. iv), “Goodness is praised as beauty.” But beauty has the aspect of a formal cause. Therefore goodness has the aspect of a formal cause.

Objection 2. Further, goodness is self-diffusive; for Dionysius says (Div. Nom. iv) that goodness is that whereby all things subsist, and are. But to be self-giving implies the aspect of an efficient cause. Therefore goodness has the aspect of an efficient cause.

Objection 3. Further, Augustine says (De Doctr. Christ. i, 31) that “we exist because God is good.” But we owe our existence to God as the efficient cause. Therefore goodness implies the aspect of an efficient cause.

On the contrary, The Philosopher says (Phys. ii) that “that is to be considered as the end and the good of other things, for the sake of which something is.” Therefore goodness has the aspect of a final cause.

I answer that, Since goodness is that which all things desire, and since this has the aspect of an end, it is clear that goodness implies the aspect of an end. Nevertheless, the idea of goodness presupposes the idea of an efficient cause, and also of a formal cause. For we see that what is first in causing, is last in the thing caused. Fire, e.g. heats first of all before it reproduces the form of fire; though the heat in the fire follows from its substantial form. Now in causing, goodness and the end come first, both of which move the agent to act; secondly, the action of the agent moving to the form; thirdly, comes the form. Hence in that which is caused the converse ought to take place, so that there should be first, the form whereby it is a being; secondly, we consider in it its effective power, whereby it is perfect in being, for a thing is perfect when it can reproduce its like, as the Philosopher says (Meteor. iv); thirdly, there follows the formality of goodness which is the basic principle of its perfection.

Reply to Objection 1. Beauty and goodness in a thing are identical fundamentally; for they are based upon the same thing, namely, the form; and consequently goodness is praised as beauty. But they differ logically, for goodness properly relates to the appetite (goodness being what all things desire); and therefore it has the aspect of an end (the appetite being a kind of movement towards a thing). On the other hand, beauty relates to the cognitive faculty; for beautiful things are those which please when seen. Hence beauty consists in due proportion; for the senses delight in things duly proportioned, as in what is after their own kind–because even sense is a sort of reason, just as is every cognitive faculty. Now since knowledge is by assimilation, and similarity relates to form, beauty properly belongs to the nature of a formal cause.

Reply to Objection 2. Goodness is described as self-diffusive in the sense that an end is said to move.

Reply to Objection 3. He who has a will is said to be good, so far as he has a good will; because it is by our will that we employ whatever powers we may have. Hence a man is said to be good, not by his good understanding; but by his good will. Now the will relates to the end as to its proper object. Thus the saying, “we exist because God is good” has reference to the final cause.

Article 5. Whether the essence of goodness consists in mode, species and order?

Objection 1. It seems that the essence of goodness does not consist in mode, species and order. For goodness and being differ logically. But mode, species and order seem to belong to the nature of being, for it is written: “Thou hast ordered all things in measure, and number, and weight” (Wisdom 11:21). And to these three can be reduced species, mode and order, as Augustine says (Gen. ad lit. iv, 3): “Measure fixes the mode of everything, number gives it its species, and weight gives it rest and stability.” Therefore the essence of goodness does not consist in mode, species and order.

Objection 2. Further, mode, species and order are themselves good. Therefore if the essence of goodness consists in mode, species and order, then every mode must have its own mode, species and order. The same would be the case with species and order in endless succession.

Objection 3. Further, evil is the privation of mode, species and order. But evil is not the total absence of goodness. Therefore the essence of goodness does not consist in mode, species and order.

Objection 4. Further, that wherein consists the essence of goodness cannot be spoken of as evil. Yet we can speak of an evil mode, species and order. Therefore the essence of goodness does not consist in mode, species and order.

Objection 5. Further, mode, species and order are caused by weight, number and measure, as appears from the quotation from Augustine. But not every good thing has weight, number and measure; for Ambrose says (Hexam. i, 9): “It is of the nature of light not to have been created in number, weight and measure.” Therefore the essence of goodness does not consist in mode, species and order.

On the contrary, Augustine says (De Nat. Boni. iii): “These three–mode, species and order–as common good things, are in everything God has made; thus, where these three abound the things are very good; where they are less, the things are less good; where they do not exist at all, there can be nothing good.” But this would not be unless the essence of goodness consisted in them. Therefore the essence of goodness consists in mode, species and order.

I answer that, Everything is said to be good so far as it is perfect; for in that way only is it desirable (as shown above 1, 3). Now a thing is said to be perfect if it lacks nothing according to the mode of its perfection. But since everything is what it is by its form (and since the form presupposes certain things, and from the form certain things necessarily follow), in order for a thing to be perfect and good it must have a form, together with all that precedes and follows upon that form. Now the form presupposes determination or commensuration of its principles, whether material or efficient, and this is signified by the mode: hence it is said that the measure marks the mode. But the form itself is signified by the species; for everything is placed in its species by its form. Hence the number is said to give the species, for definitions signifying species are like numbers, according to the Philosopher (Metaph. x); for as a unit added to, or taken from a number, changes its species, so a difference added to, or taken from a definition, changes its species. Further, upon the form follows an inclination to the end, or to an action, or something of the sort; for everything, in so far as it is in act, acts and tends towards that which is in accordance with its form; and this belongs to weight and order. Hence the essence of goodness, so far as it consists in perfection, consists also in mode, species and order.

Reply to Objection 1. These three only follow upon being, so far as it is perfect, and according to this perfection is it good.

Reply to Objection 2. Mode, species and order are said to be good, and to be beings, not as though they themselves were subsistences, but because it is through them that other things are both beings and good. Hence they have no need of other things whereby they are good: for they are spoken of as good, not as though formally constituted so by something else, but as formally constituting others good: thus whiteness is not said to be a being as though it were by anything else; but because, by it, something else has accidental being, as an object that is white.

Reply to Objection 3. Every being is due to some form. Hence, according to every being of a thing is its mode, species, order. Thus, a man has a mode, species and order as he is white, virtuous, learned and so on; according to everything predicated of him. But evil deprives a thing of some sort of being, as blindness deprives us of that being which is sight; yet it does not destroy every mode, species and order, but only such as follow upon the being of sight.

Reply to Objection 4. Augustine says (De Nat. Boni. xxiii), “Every mode, as mode, is good” (and the same can be said of species and order). “But an evil mode, species and order are so called as being less than they ought to be, or as not belonging to that which they ought to belong. Therefore they are called evil, because they are out of place and incongruous.”

Reply to Objection 5. The nature of light is spoken of as being without number, weight and measure, not absolutely, but in comparison with corporeal things, because the power of light extends to all corporeal things; inasmuch as it is an active quality of the first body that causes change, i.e. the heavens.

Article 6. Whether goodness is rightly divided into the virtuous, the useful and the pleasant?

“Bonum honestum” is the virtuous good considered as fitting. (cf. II-II, 141, 3; II-II, 145)

Objection 1. It seems that goodness is not rightly divided into the virtuous, the useful and the pleasant. For goodness is divided by the ten predicaments, as the Philosopher says (Ethic. i). But the virtuous, the useful and the pleasant can be found under one predicament. Therefore goodness is not rightly divided by them.

Objection 2. Further, every division is made by opposites. But these three do not seem to be opposites; for the virtuous is pleasing, and no wickedness is useful; whereas this ought to be the case if the division were made by opposites, for then the virtuous and the useful would be opposed; and Tully speaks of this (De Offic. ii). Therefore this division is incorrect.

Objection 3. Further, where one thing is on account of another, there is only one thing. But the useful is not goodness, except so far as it is pleasing and virtuous. Therefore the useful ought not to divided against the pleasant and the virtuous.

On the contrary, Ambrose makes use of this division of goodness (De Offic. i, 9)

I answer that, This division properly concerns human goodness. But if we consider the nature of goodness from a higher and more universal point of view, we shall find that this division properly concerns goodness as such. For everything is good so far as it is desirable, and is a term of the movement of the appetite; the term of whose movement can be seen from a consideration of the movement of a natural body. Now the movement of a natural body is terminated by the end absolutely; and relatively by the means through which it comes to the end, where the movement ceases; so a thing is called a term of movement, so far as it terminates any part of that movement. Now the ultimate term of movement can be taken in two ways, either as the thing itself towards which it tends, e.g. a place or form; or a state of rest in that thing. Thus, in the movement of the appetite, the thing desired that terminates the movement of the appetite relatively, as a means by which something tends towards another, is called the useful; but that sought after as the last thing absolutely terminating the movement of the appetite, as a thing towards which for its own sake the appetite tends, is called the virtuous; for the virtuous is that which is desired for its own sake; but that which terminates the movement of the appetite in the form of rest in the thing desired, is called the pleasant.

Reply to Objection 1. Goodness, so far as it is identical with being, is divided by the ten predicaments. But this division belongs to it according to its proper formality.

Reply to Objection 2. This division is not by opposite things; but by opposite aspects. Now those things are called pleasing which have no other formality under which they are desirable except the pleasant, being sometimes hurtful and contrary to virtue. Whereas the useful applies to such as have nothing desirable in themselves, but are desired only as helpful to something further, as the taking of bitter medicine; while the virtuous is predicated of such as are desirable in themselves.

Reply to Objection 3. Goodness is not divided into these three as something univocal to be predicated equally of them all; but as something analogical to be predicated of them according to priority and posteriority. Hence it is predicated chiefly of the virtuous; then of the pleasant; and lastly of the useful.