In this video, Dr. Italy discusses Augustine’s fight against both Manicheans and Pelagians defending free will on the one hand and the utter necessity of grace on the other.
In this, video #20 in his series on the Catholic Theological Tradition, Marcellino D’Ambrosio, Ph.D. (Dr. Italy) shows why Augustine is known as the “Doctor of Grace.” Though he defends free will against Manicheans and other who believe in fate, and at the same time shows the limits of free will by developing the biblical doctrine that becomes known as original sin. Human will is wounded by sin and only by grace can human beings even begin to return to God and say yes to his offer of salvation. So optimists, such as the monk Pelagius, who see grace as a mere bonus given in reward for virtuous action, attack Augustine. In his dispute with the Pelagians, Augustine helps to develop the Catholic doctrine of grace.