CCC 143 By faith, man completely submits his intellect and his will to God.1 With his whole being man gives his assent to God the revealer. Sacred Scripture calls this human response to God, the author of revelation, “the obedience of faith”.2
CCC 437 To the shepherds, the angel announced the birth of Jesus as the Messiah promised to Israel: “To you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.”3 From the beginning he was “the one whom the Father consecrated and sent into the world”, conceived as “holy” in Mary’s virginal womb.4 God called Joseph to “take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit”, so that Jesus, “who is called Christ”, should be born of Joseph’s spouse into the messianic lineage of David.5
CCC 445 After his Resurrection, Jesus’ divine sonship becomes manifest in the power of his glorified humanity. He was “designated Son of God in power according to the Spirit of holiness by his Resurrection from the dead”.6 The apostles can confess: “We have beheld his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.”7
CCC 494 At the announcement that she would give birth to “the Son of the Most High” without knowing man, by the power of the Holy Spirit, Mary responded with the obedience of faith, certain that “with God nothing will be impossible”: “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be [done] to me according to your word.”8 Thus, giving her consent to God’s word, Mary becomes the mother of Jesus. Espousing the divine will for salvation wholeheartedly, without a single sin to restrain her, she gave herself entirely to the person and to the work of her Son; she did so in order to serve the mystery of redemption with him and dependent on him, by God’s grace:9
As St. Irenaeus says, “Being obedient she became the cause of salvation for herself and for the whole human race.”10 Hence not a few of the early Fathers gladly assert. ..: “The knot of Eve’s disobedience was untied by Mary’s obedience: what the virgin Eve bound through her disbelief, Mary loosened by her faith.”10 Comparing her with Eve, they call Mary “the Mother of the living” and frequently claim: “Death through Eve, life through Mary.”12
CCC 648 Christ’s Resurrection is an object of faith in that it is a transcendent intervention of God himself in creation and history. In it the three divine persons act together as one, and manifest their own proper characteristics. The Father’s power “raised up” Christ his Son and by doing so perfectly introduced his Son’s humanity, including his body, into the Trinity. Jesus is conclusively revealed as “Son of God in power according to the Spirit of holiness by his Resurrection from the dead”.13 St. Paul insists on the manifestation of God’s power14 through the working of the Spirit who gave life to Jesus’ dead humanity and called it to the glorious state of Lordship.
CCC 695 Anointing. The symbolism of anointing with oil also signifies the Holy Spirit,15 to the point of becoming a synonym for the Holy Spirit. In Christian initiation, anointing is the sacramental sign of Confirmation, called “chrismation” in the Churches of the East. Its full force can be grasped only in relation to the primary anointing accomplished by the Holy Spirit, that of Jesus. Christ (in Hebrew “messiah”) means the one “anointed” by God’s Spirit. There were several anointed ones of the Lord in the Old Covenant, pre-eminently King David.16 But Jesus is God’s Anointed in a unique way: the humanity the Son assumed was entirely anointed by the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit established him as “Christ.”17 The Virgin Mary conceived Christ by the Holy Spirit who, through the angel, proclaimed him the Christ at his birth, and prompted Simeon to come to the temple to see the Christ of the Lord.18 The Spirit filled Christ and the power of the Spirit went out from him in his acts of healing and of saving.19 Finally, it was the Spirit who raised Jesus from the dead.20 Now, fully established as “Christ” in his humanity victorious over death, Jesus pours out the Holy Spirit abundantly until “the saints” constitute – in their union with the humanity of the Son of God – that perfect man “to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ”:21 “the whole Christ,” in St. Augustine’s expression.
CCC 876 Intrinsically linked to the sacramental nature of ecclesial ministry is its character as service. Entirely dependent on Christ who gives mission and authority, ministers are truly “slaves of Christ,”22 in the image of him who freely took “the form of a slave” for us.23 Because the word and grace of which they are ministers are not their own, but are given to them by Christ for the sake of others, they must freely become the slaves of all.24
CCC 2087 Our moral life has its source in faith in God who reveals his love to us. St. Paul speaks of the “obedience of faith”25 as our first obligation. He shows that “ignorance of God” is the principle and explanation of all moral deviations.26 Our duty toward God is to believe in him and to bear witness to him.
1 Cf. DV 5.
2 Cf. Rom 1:5; 16:26.
3 Lk 2:11.
4 Jn 10:36; cf. Lk 1:35.
5 Mt 1:20; cf. 1:16; Rom 1:1; 2 Tim 2:8; Rev 22:16.
6 Rom 1:3; cf. Acts 13:33.
7 Jn 1:14.
8 Lk 1:28-38; cf. Rom 1:5.
9 Cf. LG 56.
10 St. Irenaeus, Adv. haeres. 3, 22, 4: PG 7/1, 959A.
11 St. Irenaeus, Adv. haeres. 3, 22, 4: PG 7/1, 959A.
12 LC 56; St. Epiphanius, Panarion 2, 78, 18: PG 42, 728CD-729AB; St. Jerome, Ep. 22, 21: PL 22, 408.
13 Rom I 3-4; cf. Acts 2:24.
14 Cf. Rom 6:4; 2 Cor 13:4; Phil 3:10; Eph 1:19-22; Heb 7:16.
15 Cf. 1 In 2:20:27; 2 Cor 1:21.
16 Cf. Ex 30:22-32; 1 Sam 16:13.
17 Cf. Lk 418-19; Isa 61:1.
18 Cf. Lk 2:11,26-27.
19 Cf. Lk 4:1; 6:19; 8:46.
20 Cf. Rom 1:4; 8:11.
21 Eph 4:13; cf. Acts 2:36.
22 Cf. Rom 1:1.
23 Phil 2:7.
24 Cf. 1 Cor 9:19.
25 Rom 1:5; 16:26.
26 Cf. Rom 1:18-32.