Of God and His Creatures

This distinction between the dictate (or exigency) of nature, and the divine law, answering to what Cardinal Newman calls " the critical and the judicial function of conscience" (Grammar of Assent pp. 102-107), is of the first importance in the theory of morals. I have endeavoured to bring it out elsewhere: Ethics and Natural Law, pp. 109-125. St Thomas speaks of the 'divine law' as known in the Jewish and Christian revelation. In a 'state of pure nature,' without revelation, we should have had to argue a priori that God must have willed to ratify the exigences of human nature and natural reason, and command their observance. What those exigences of nature are see Chap. CXXIX.

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