The spiritual understanding of the mystery of God according to saint Thomas Aquinas


Ignacio M. Manresa Lamarca, hnssc


Espíritu: ISSN 0014-0716, Year 68, Issue 157, 2019, pages 161-187




Saint Thomas Aquinas is a Magister in Sacra Pagina. The spiritual understanding of the mystery of God is one of those concepts that Saint Thomas has formed from the reading of Sacred Scripture, particularly of Saint Paul and Saint John. It is precisely the adjective “spiritual” which in qualifying the understanding of the mystery of God gives it its peculiar meaning. With this adjective, saint Thomas qualifies this knowledge as the salvific knowledge that really introduces men into salvation and perfection. It is opposed to other knowledges that do not open to the salvific revelation of God and that are qualified as carnal or literal. Concretely the Aquinate, following Saint Paul, considers the knowledge of the reason that is closed or a faith that does not open to the fullness of revelation as a carnal knowledge. The spiritual intelligence in Saint Thomas can highlight not-so-well-known aspects of his thought and serve to illuminate some current issues such as contemporary biblical hermeneutics.

Key words:

Saint Thomas Aquinas; knowledge of God; salvific knowledge; biblical hermeneutics.


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