Scandal (theology)


Scandal (theology)

In Catholic theology, scandal is a behavior or attitude that leads another to sin.

In order to qualify as scandalous, the behavior must, in itself, be evil or give the appearance of evil. To do a good act or an indifferent act, even knowing that it will inspire others to sin — as when a student studies diligently to do well, knowing it will cause envy — is not scandalous. Again, to ask someone to commit perjury is scandalous, but for a judge to require witnesses to give an oath even when he knows the witness is likely to commit perjury is not scandalous.

It does not require that the other person actually commit sin; to be scandalous, it suffices that the act is of a nature to lead someone to sin.

Active scandal is performed by a person; passive scandal is the reaction of a person to active scandal (scandal given or "scandalum datum"), or to acts which, because of the viewer's ignorance, weakness, or malice, are regarded as scandalous (scandal received or "scandalum acceptum").

Scandal is performed with the intention of inducing someone to sin. Urging someone to commit a sin is therefore active scandal. In the case where the person urging the sin is aware of its nature and the person he is urging is ignorant, the sins committed are the fault of the person who urged them.

Scandal is also performed when someone performs an evil act, or an act that appears to be evil, knowing that it will lead others into sin. (In case of an apparently evil act, a sufficient reason for the act despite the faults it will cause negates the scandal.)

Scandal may also be incurred when an innocent act may be an occasion of sin to the weak, but such acts should not be foregone if the goods at stake are of importance.

The Biblical basis of scandal is the prohibition of putting a stumbling block before the blind [] : "stumbling block" is the literal meaning of σκανδαλον in Greek. For the analogous concept in Judaism, see Lifnei iver.

External links

* [http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/13506d.htm "Catholic Encyclopedia" "Scandal"]
* [http://www.vatican.va/archive/catechism/p3s2c2a5.htm#II Scandal] , Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2284-2287


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Scandal (disambiguation) — A scandal is behaviour or talk which is regarded as very shocking and immoral by many people.Scandal may also refer to: * Scandal (theology), a behavior or attitude that leads another to sin * Scandal (novel), by A. N. Wilson * Scandal (1986… …   Wikipedia

  • Divorce (in Moral Theology) —     Divorce (in Moral Theology)     † Catholic Encyclopedia ► Divorce (in Moral Theology)     This subject will be treated here under two distinct heads: First, divorce in moral theology; second, divorce in civil jurisprudence.     The term… …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Philosophical theology — is the disciplined employment of philosophical methods in developing or analyzing theological concepts. It therefore includes natural theology as well as philosophical treatments of orthodox and heterodox theology. See also *Philosophy of… …   Wikipedia

  • religion — religionless, adj. /ri lij euhn/, n. 1. a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, esp. when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and… …   Universalium

  • France — /frans, frahns/; Fr. /frddahonns/, n. 1. Anatole /ann nann tawl /, (Jacques Anatole Thibault), 1844 1924, French novelist and essayist: Nobel prize 1921. 2. a republic in W Europe. 58,470,421; 212,736 sq. mi. (550,985 sq. km). Cap.: Paris. 3.… …   Universalium

  • United States — a republic in the N Western Hemisphere comprising 48 conterminous states, the District of Columbia, and Alaska in North America, and Hawaii in the N Pacific. 267,954,767; conterminous United States, 3,022,387 sq. mi. (7,827,982 sq. km); with… …   Universalium

  • Germany — /jerr meuh nee/, n. a republic in central Europe: after World War II divided into four zones, British, French, U.S., and Soviet, and in 1949 into East Germany and West Germany; East and West Germany were reunited in 1990. 84,068,216; 137,852 sq.… …   Universalium

  • literature — /lit euhr euh cheuhr, choor , li treuh /, n. 1. writings in which expression and form, in connection with ideas of permanent and universal interest, are characteristic or essential features, as poetry, novels, history, biography, and essays. 2.… …   Universalium

  • Chabad messianism — Main article: Chabad Part of a series on Chabad Rebbes of Lubavitch …   Wikipedia

  • Roman Catholicism — the faith, practice, and system of government of the Roman Catholic Church. [1815 25] * * * Largest single Christian denomination in the world, with some one billion members, or about 18% of the world s population. The Roman Catholic church has… …   Universalium