(Continuing from our digression on angels in CDH I.16-18)
“By what reason or necessity did God become man and by His death, just as we believe and profess, return life to the world when He was able to do this through another person, either angelic or human, or by His will alone?” (CDH I.1)
What Anselm has covered so far:
- Sin is a problem that must be fixed. God cannot ignore it or His plan would fail.
- God cannot delegate this task to another creature or we would no longer be servants of God alone and equal to the holy angels.
- Sin is a problem of justice. Every injustice has a primary fault–depriving someone of their due–and a secondary fault–damaging that person’s honor. Each of these facets of injustice cause the order of the universe to be disrupted. Until each issue has been resolved, disorder reigns.
- There are only two ways to resolve the secondary damage to honor: punishment and satisfaction.
- The punishment of hell fails to re-order the universe because, by resolving one disorder, another is caused or perpetuated.
So that brings us to the most famous part of Anselm’s argument, wherein he addresses the problem of satisfaction. This is why Anselm’s argument is often referred to as the “Satisfaction Theory.”
The Analogy of the Pearl
Before diving into his analysis of the satisfaction horn, Anselm returns to the idea that God cannot simply ignore the problem of sin. He refreshes the dilemma by relating the problem of sin in the form of a short allegory. Continue reading Cur Deus Homo I.19-25