Volume 50, Issue 1, June 2010
Matthew Alan Gaumer
The Development of the Concept of Grace in Late Antique North Africa
This article identifies the context of Augustine's theology of grace. His disappointing experiences as a priest and young bishop impacted his theological notions of gratia, especially as they would mature during the Pelagian crisis. Using Cyprian as an authority, Augustine argued against the Donatist idea of grace solely through membership in the 'pure' church and sacramental grace only via ministers free from ecclesial-sin (traditio). Instead, Augustine argued that all grace is solely through God and that all humanity and the earthly Church was a mixed body of the fallen and blessed and in need of divine grace.