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This grace cannot be merited; it proceeds solely from the love and mercy of God.
Though the office of Saviour is really one, it is virtually multiple: there must be an atonement for sin and damnation, an establishment of the truth so as to overcome human ignorance and error, a perennial source of spiritual strength aiding man in his struggle against darkness and concupiscence. Salvation has in Scriptural language the general meaning of liberation from straitened circumstances or from other evils, and of a translation into a state of freedom and security ( 1 Samuel ; ; 2 Samuel ; 2 Kings ).At times it expresses God's help against Israel's enemies, at other times, the Divine blessing bestowed on the produce of the soil ( Isaiah 45:8 ).As sin is the greatest evil, being the root and source of all evil, Sacred Scripture uses the word "salvation" mainly in the sense of liberation of the human race or of individual man from sin and its consequences.We shall first consider the salvation of the human race , and then salvation as it is verified in the individual man.Moreover salvation makes us coheirs of Christ ( Romans -17 ), a royal priesthood ( 1 Peter 2:9 ; cf.
Exodus 19:6 ), sons of God, temples of the Holy Ghost ( 1 Corinthians ), and other Christs-- Christianus alter Christus ; it perfects the angelical orders, raises the dignity of the material world, and restores all things in Christ ( Ephesians 1:9-10 ).
This disposition is followed by justification itself, which consists not in the mere remission of sins, but in the sanctification and renewal of the inner man by the voluntary reception of God's grace and gifts, whence a man becomes just instead of unjust, a friend instead of a foe and so an heir according to hope of eternal life.
This change happens either by reason of a perfect act of charity elicited by a well disposed sinner or by virtue of the Sacrament either of Baptism or of Penance according to the condition of the respective subject laden with sin.
The Council further indicates the causes of this change.
By the merit of the Most Holy Passion through the Holy Spirit , the charity of God is shed abroad in the hearts of those who are justified.
The practical working of the kingly office of Christ is described in the treatises on the sources of revelation ; on grace, on the Church, on the sacraments, and on the last things. Christ as Priest The ordinary priest, is made God's own by an accidental unction, Christ is constituted God's own Son by the substantial unction with the Divine nature ; the ordinary priest is made holy, though not impeccable, by his consecration, while Christ is separated from all sin and sinners by the hypostatic union ; the ordinary priest draws nigh unto God in a very imperfect manner, but Christ is seated at the right hand of the power of God.