Divine Economy; Angelic Rebellion

1. By tradition we say that God the Father concerns himself with the entire universe; the Holy Spirit, with mankind, especially with its multiple kinds of unions through charity; and the Son, with the salvation and happiness of each individual.

But we can also look at it this way: the Son died the first time so that the world could be created; the second time at birth to unite humanity to the Godhead; and the third time on the cross to save individual men. But I’ve written on this extensively already.

2. The reason for man’s essential corruptibility and the inevitability of the Original Sin was the excess of potency in him. Angels are rational but have less potentiality in them and so are metaphysically safe; animals have plenty of potency but are innocent for being irrational.

As a result, man is a uniquely miserable creature. Blessed is the Lord for creating us anyway and providing an astonishing remedy for our inherent defects!

We can further see that the fall of the angels was a dispute between creatures and did not involve God. Lucifer was not so stupid as to rebel against the infinite and almighty God. His nature is and always has been intact. What happened rather was that the angels were given the grace of charity for men, as per the Holy Spirit’s mission to the world, but Lucifer despised humans for their (future) foibles and refused the grace. He then decided to wipe us off the face of the earth, not directly but by inclining us to murder each other. It should please us that the world, though it is beset by conflict, is after all not insane.

Note also that the demons will not be “punished,” as if they were part of our “civil society” of rational creatures and committed some crime. We are not cops who apprehended suspected criminals who will be granted all the requisite due process; if convicted in a court of law, “punishment” will be administered to some demons perhaps to deter others from harming men in the future. We are not a society disrupted by occasional sporadic disorderly conduct; we are at war which is total and merciless. The demons will be not punished by a civil authority but defeated in war and forced to surrender unconditionally.

God’s Efficient Freedom

God’s material simplicity seems to apply to His 1st level;

His final happiness, to His 2nd;

and His formal goodness, to 3rd. (Thus, to the question, “What is God?” we reply, “Goodness.”)

How does God’s being efficiently free fit into this picture? It applies in different ways to both 1st and 2nd levels.

On the 1st level, we say that God is bound by no laws of operation even in respect to His simple matter. Nothing determines God to work one definite way yet not any other way.

On the 2nd level, we remove all limitations on God’s ad intra omnipotence and therefore on His “pursuit” and enjoyment of happiness.

Efficient causation for God then has something to describe in regard to both 1st-level freedom and 2nd-level power. To be free is to have permission to act, and not even God’s nature imposes any rules or prohibitions on God. To have power is to be able to bring about happy consequences of acting, and God can do so with perfect competence.

God then is free from any either internal or external obstacles to His beatitude.

Paradox of the Angelic Fall

WarCraft 3 Reforged Mal'Ganis demonThough the fallen angels have been driven from heaven, their nature remains uncorrupt. Now every creature in its pure state loves God who is lovable essentially. Hence, demons love God at least as their Creator.

Human nature, on the other hand, is wounded in general; and many particular humans are sinners and may not even believe that God exists. But human saints at least, too, love God.

Why then are demons and men locked in a merciless battle? Wasn’t it the same God whom we love who created both our kinds?