A Young Person's Guide to Theology

Semester 1 Edition by Johannah Carmona

The Mystery of Redemption

The Original State of Man

  • awareness of God's presence
  • capacity for knowledge and love of divine life
  • profound loving relationship with Him
  • destined for a blissful life in Heaven
  • exceedingly happy, pleasure, fulfillment
  • work was rewarding, not tiring
  • in harmony with God
  • viewed each other with innocence and purity
  • everything was pretty good
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Original Sin and Its Consequences

What happened?

  • nahash- Hebrew word for a powerful, evil creature
  • God placed Adam and Eve into the Garden of Eden, telling them to enjoy their lives with free will, but with a caveat: do not eat of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil.
  • "You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die." (Genesis 3:3)
  • Through the temptations of the nahash, Eve succumbed to temptation and together, Adam and Eve ate the fruit of the tree, committing Original Sin.

What was the sin?

  • disobedience


  • immediate effects
  • expelled from Eden
  • affects all descendants
  • suffering and death
  • pain
  • no unity with God
  • human intellect clouded
  • selfishness
  • disorder in passions and appetites
  • ashamed of body
  • knowledge of evil
  • gates of Heaven closed
  • sin

Only a huge act of love could save us now. Perhaps God's one and only son?

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The Word Became Flesh

  • God truly humbled himself into a human form: Jesus, His son. Jesus is fully God and fully man.
  • God sent Jesus to earth in order to establish our salvation and allow us to share in Divine Life.
  • Seven Sacraments are the main ways to receive the sanctifying grace we need to live a holy life.
  • "Love one another as I have loved you."

Why would He do that?

  • to make expiation for sins, reconcile man with God, and restore human nature lost by sin

Through Original Sin, the gates of Heaven were closed and humans lost their divine life. Through the sacrifice of Jesus' death, our rights were restored and we have the ability to have eternal life in Heaven with God.

  • to manifest the infinite depth of God's love

God wanted to show us how much He loves us. He designed us to share in his goodness and everlasting happiness. By dying on the cross, He showed us an ultimate act of love.

  • to offer a model of holiness

God wanted to show us the dignity of a human person. The perfect example, Jesus, showed us how great a human person can be.

  • to allow people to share in his divine life

Jesus dying opened the gates of Heaven that were closed by Original Sin. His sacrifice allowed us to have the ability to have eternal life in Heaven, but we have to freely choose it.

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The Paschal Mystery

What is it?

  • The Passion, Death, and Resurrection of Christ and the saving significance of these

As the Suffering Servant, Jesus bore the burden of our sins to offer Himself in place of them. Through the Paschal Mystery, we learn the evil of sin that caused Jesus to suffer in this way. The Resurrection of Jesus proved He is truly the son of God. Jesus ascended into Heaven, body and soul, forty days later, which gave us the Holy Spirit to dwell in each of us, helping us in our journey of life, completing His mission of evangelization.

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The Theological Virtues

  • faith

We assent to the truths supernaturally revealed by God and act on it.

  • hope

Gives us the will power to trust that God will give us what we need.

  • charity (love)

We love God above all things and our neighbors as ourselves.

The greatest virtue is charity because without it, the other two virtues are ineffective to attain holiness and eternal life.

Prayer: How We Communicate with God

  • The Our Father is the perfect example of how we should pray. Jesus himself gave it to us. It is called the "perfect prayer" because it is a model of all Christian prayer.
  • Prayer is dialogue with God. We should live our lives as a constant prayer to God.
  • Scripture helps us pray. Many prayers we know came from scriptures. Practices such as lectio divina are great ways to meditate on what God is telling us.
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The Church

The Four Marks of the Church

  • one

The Church is one in many ways. All the teachings of the Catholic Church are the same teachings taught throughout the world. The teachings taught in the Philippines are the same teachings taught in Tyler, TX. The whole church is one in the Body of Christ.

  • holy

Jesus began the Church and the Holy Spirit dwells within the people. The Church is the bride of Christ because she is in union with Him. In the celebration of the Holy Mass, we receive the actual Body and Blood of Christ in the Eucharist.

  • catholic

Aside from the name of the church, catholic with a lower case letter means universal. Salvation from God is not limited to just some people. Every single person on this planet is called to live a life of holiness in Jesus Christ.

  • apostolic

The Church was spread by the apostles. Before Jesus was crucified, He made his apostles at the last supper the first priests and St. Peter the first pope. The Church and the apostolic teachings were then instituted through them with the grace of the Holy Spirit. We

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The Last Things

  • Last Things refers to our judgement before God in Heaven when we die.
  • Heaven- this is our ultimate goal in life. It is eternal happiness and life with God where all of our needs are met and we live in perfect harmony with God.
  • Hell- Eternal separation from God through free will. God does not want us to go to Hell and he calls us everyday to choose to follow Him, but through the abuse of our gift of free will, we decide our own futures.
  • Purgatory- condition of being that is a preparation for Heaven after death. It is joyful and sad because you know you will get to Heaven, but you are not there yet.
  • God promises us that Jesus will come again. He came in the Incarnation 2,000 years ago and he will come again sometime in the future. Nobody can predict the exact date and time this will happen, so we must be ready to face God in particular judgement every minute of everyday.
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The Parousia

  • term for Jesus' Second Coming. This marks the end of the world. This is not something to be feared unless we are not prepared to go to Heaven. We must constantly live in expectation of Heaven so that at the unknown hour, we will be saved and share in eternal life with God in Heaven.
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