I am trying to clarify the difference in my own mind between a traditional Catholic and traditional Protestant view of grace, specifically in terms of the 'works of unbelievers'. It seems hard to accurately do because many similar terms overlap, making the difference difficult to put into words. (See reverse question here Protestant view).
For example, in Outlines of Dogmatic Theology, a book written to train Catholic Priests we find [brackets mine]:
we now proceed to consider what there is to which his [a human unaided by actual grace] unaided power is adequate, and we assert that he is capable of resisting the less urgent temptations that assail him and of doing acts which have natural goodness. Without grace he can do nothing that draws him nearer to the supernatural possession of God (nn. 592, 593), nor can he resist all temptations to grievous sin (n. 598); but it is false to say that he necessarily yields to every temptation, or that all his works, whatever he does, are sin, removing him away from God. It might be thought that when we insist on these points we are fighting a shadow; but unfortunately, the shadow is deemed to have substance by too many among the sects which have arisen during the last three centuries, following the teaching of Luther, with more or less variety. (Sylvester Joseph Hunter, Outlines of Dogmatic Theology, n600, 3.51)
This author is firm about Catholic condemnation of the original sin of Protestants that fully condemned all the work of an unbeliever.
Pope Leo X. condemned the doctrine taught by Luther, that the just man sins in every good work. (Art. 31; Denz. 655.) The Council of Trent (Sess. 6, can. 7; Denz. 699) pronounces an anathema against those who say that works done before justification, whatever be their character, are truly sins or deserve the hatred of God; or that the more earnestly one prepare himself for grace, the more grievously does he sin. St. Pius V. and other Popes condemned the teaching of Baius (n. 390, vi.) that all the works of those who have not faith are sins, and the virtues of the philosophers are vices (Prop. 25; Denz. 905) (Sylvester Joseph Hunter, Outlines of Dogmatic Theology, n600, 3.52)
He clearly thinks Protestants have a tradition of being to harsh (or something) on the depraved state of those without grace, so this difference in the view of 'good works' must be real between Catholic and Protestant traditions or he would not draw attention to the danger of Luther.
Note 1: I put the statement in bold that I am referring to which I am having trouble understanding. The Catholic teacher I am quoting first explains all different kinds of graces: natural, created, actual, effectual, etc. and at several points he argues that men have some goodness without 'actual' grace. This is why he clarifies that although without any actual grace he can do good but it is not a saving good, or a good that 'draws him nearer to the supernatural'. In other words an unbeliever, or someone who has committed a mortal sin, may have no actual grace, yet still do some good under one of the other kinds of graces I assume.
Note 2: I realize this view might not be unanimous for all Catholics. I am only asking for a Biblical basis from those Catholics that make the aforementioned conclusion.
As opposed to the early Protestant reformers, What is the Catholic biblical or canon basis for concluding that some works without grace are good. (In other words that they do not more or less spring from a sinful nature as understood in the Protestant tradition).
Upon further study I can phrase the question possibly more clearly this way.
I found another statement which is from the 'Thirty Nine Articles of Religion' by the Church of England which actually more explicitly indicates the doctrine that Catholics reject. More simply put I am looking for the biblical justification of rejecting the sentiments in this article. (I tried to avoid asking a negative question but it is because I do not understand the alternate positive doctrine by the Catholic Church which is making me ask the question) Maybe the choice of words about 'doing acts which have natural goodness' by the Catholic reference I quoted would better be stated as 'doing acts that DO NOT 'have the nature of sin' in them, as declared below by the Church of England in a more polite manner than Luther or Calvin would have worded:
XIII. Of Works before Justification. WORKS done before the grace of Christ and the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, are not pleasant to God, forasmuch as they spring not of faith in Jesus Christ, neither do they make men meet to receive grace, or (as the School authors say) deserve grace of congruity: yea, rather for that they are not done as God hath willed and commanded them to be done, we doubt not but they have the nature of sin.