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Article Six

Whether Servile Fear Remains when Charity is Present

We proceed to the sixth article thus:

1. It seems that servile fear does not remain when charity is present. For Augustine says: “when charity begins to dwell in us, it drives out the fear which has prepared a place for it” (Tract 9 in Joan.).

2. Again, “the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost, which is given unto us” (Rom. 5:5). Now it is also said that “where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty” (II Cor. 3:17), and since liberty excludes servitude, it seems that servile fear is expelled by the advent, of charity.

3. Again, servile fear is caused by love of oneself, in as much as punishment diminishes the good of oneself. Now love to God expels love of oneself. It even causes one to despise oneself, according to Augustine, who says: “love of God to the contempt of self builds the city of God” (14 De Civ. Dei. 28; in Ps. 65). It seems, therefore, that servile fear is expelled by the advent of charity.

On the other hand: servile fear is a gift of the Holy Spirit, as was said in Art. 4. Now the gifts of the Holy Spirit are not taken away by the advent of charity, by which the Holy Spirit dwells in us. Hence servile fear is not taken away by the advent of charity.

I answer: servile fear is caused by love of oneself, since it is fear of the punishment which is detrimental to the good of oneself. Fear of punishment is therefore as compatible with charity as is love of oneself. For it amounts to the same thing whether a man desires his own good, or fears to be deprived of it.

There are three ways in which love of oneself may be related to charity. It may be opposed to charity, as it is when one makes love of oneself one’s end. It may, on the other hand, be included within charity, as it is when a man loves himself for God’s sake, and in God. It may, again, be distinct from charity and yet not opposed to charity, as for example when one loves oneself as one’s own proper good, but without making one’s own proper good one’s end. One may similarly have a 319special love for one’s neighbour, other than the love of charity which is founded upon God, and yet compatible with charity, loving him by reason of commodity, consanguinity, or some other human circumstance.

Thus fear of punishment, likewise, may be included within charity. For to be separated from God is a kind of punishment, which charity naturally shuns. This pertains to chaste fear. It may also be opposed to charity, as it is when one fears punishment because it is contrary to one’s own natural good, as the principal evil opposed to the good which one loves as an end. This fear of punishment is not compatible with charity. Again, fear of punishment may be substantially different from chaste fear. A man may fear punishment not because it means separation from God, but because it is harmful to his own good, yet without either making this good his end or consequently fearing the evil of punishment as the principal evil. Such fear of punishment is compatible with charity, but it is not called servile unless punishment is looked upon as the principal evil, as we explained in Arts. 2 and 3. Hence in so far as fear is servile, it cannot remain when charity is present. Yet the substance of fear can remain when charity is present, just as love of oneself can remain when charity is present.

On the first point: Augustine is here speaking of fear in so far as it is servile. The other two arguments speak of it in the same way.

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