Summa Theologica, Saint Thomas Aquinas
Summa Theologica
Saint Thomas Aquinas
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The Summa Theologiae (written 1265–1274 and also known as the Summa Theologica or simply the Summa) is the best-known work of Thomas Aquinas (c. 1225–1274). Although unfinished, the Summa is "one of the classics of the history of philosophy and one of the most influential works of Western literature."[1] It is intended as an instructional guide for theology students, including seminarians and the literate laity. It is a compendium of all of the main theological teachings of the Catholic Church. It presents the reasoning for almost all points of Christian theology in the West. The Summa's topics follow a cycle: God; Creation, Man; Man's purpose; Christ; the Sacraments; and back to God.

SUMMA THEOLOGICA

Prima Secundae
Part I-II


by Saint Thomas Aquinas

Translated by the Fathers of the English Dominican Province


TREATISE ON LAW
(QQ. 90-108)


QUESTION 90

OF THE ESSENCE OF LAW
(In Four Articles)

We have now to consider the extrinsic principles of acts. Now theextrinsic principle inclining to evil is the devil, of whosetemptations we have spoken in the First Part (Q. 114). But theextrinsic principle moving to good is God, Who both instructs us bymeans of His Law, and assists us by His Grace: wherefore in the firstplace we must speak of law; in the second place, of grace.

Concerning law, we must consider: (1) Law itself in general; (2) itsparts. Concerning law in general three points offer themselves forour consideration: (1) Its essence; (2) The different kinds of law;(3) The effects of law.

Under the first head there are four points of inquiry:

(1) Whether law is something pertaining to reason?

(2) Concerning the end of law;

(3) Its cause;

(4) The promulgation of law.


FIRST ARTICLE
[I-II, Q. 90, Art. 1]

Whether Law Is Something Pertaining to Reason?

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