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Catechism of the Catholic Church


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II. The Desires of the Spirit

2541 The economy of law and grace turns men's hearts away from avarice and envy. It initiates them into desire for the Sovereign Good; it instructs them in the desires of the Holy Spirit who satisfies man's heart.
The God of the promises always warned man against seduction by what from the beginning has seemed "good for food . . . a delight to the eyes . . . to be desired to make one wise."329

2542 The Law entrusted to Israel never sufficed to justify those subject to it; it even became the instrument of "lust."330 The gap between wanting and doing points to the conflict between God's Law which is the "law of my mind," and another law "making me captive to the law of sin which dwells in my members."331

2543 "But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from law, although the law and the prophets bear witness to it, the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe."332 Henceforth, Christ's faithful "have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires"; they are led by the Spirit and follow the desires of the Spirit.333




329 Gen 3:6.


330 Cf. Rom 7:7.


331 Rom 7:23; cf. 7:10.


332 Rom 3:21-22.


333 Gal 5:24; cf. Rom 8:14, 27.





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