« ElőzőTovább »
and of Elijah. Thought of true Glory the cure of vanity. 319 Elias, when those armies were present, and the king, and Rom,
10,11-13 all the people, said, How long halt ye upon both your
1 Kings hips? But we flatter all, court all, with this servile obse-18, 21. quiousness buying their honour. Wherefore all things are
(true turned upside down, and we have fallen from this grace, sense of
halt) and the business of Christianity is treacherously given up, and every thing neglected for the opinion of the generality. Let us then banish this passion, and then we shall have a right notion of liberty, and of the haven, and the calm. For the vain man is ever like persons in a storm, trembling, and fearing, and serving a thousand masters. But he that is clear of this thraldom, is like men in havens, enjoying a liberty untainted. Not so that person, but as many acquaintances as he has, so many masters has he, and he is forced to be a slave to all of them. How then are we to get free from this hard bondage? It is by growing enamoured of another glory, which is really glory. For as with those that are enamoured of persons, the sight of some handsomer one doth by its being seen take them off from the first; so with those that court the glory which cometh from us men, the glory from heaven, if it gleameth on them, has power to lead them off from this. Let us then look to this, and become thoroughly acquainted with it, that by feeling admiration of its beauty, we may shun the hideousness of the other, and have the benefit of much pleasure by enjoying this continually. Which may we all attain to by the grace and love toward man, &c.
ο εξισίσομεν και added after χάριτος in
Bodl. and in Ben. fm. Mss.
Rom. x, 14, 15.
believed ? and how shall they believe in Him of whom
HOMIL. HERE again he takes from them all excuse. For since He XVIII.
had said, I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge, and that being ignorant of God's righteousness, they submitted not themselves to it: he next shews, that for this ignorance itself they were punishable before God. This he does not say
but he makes it good by carrying on his discourse in the way of question, and so convicting them more clearly, by framing the whole passage out of objections and answers. But consider. Above, he means, the Prophet says, Whosoever shall call upon the Name of the Lord shall be saved. Now somebody might say perhaps, But how could they call upon Him whom they had not believed? Then there is a question from him after the objection; And why did they not believe? Then an objection again. A person certainly may say, and how could they believe, since they had not heard? Yet hear they did, he re-implies. Then another objection again. And how could they hear without a preacher? Then an answer again. Yet preach they did, and there were many sent forth for this very purpose. And whence does it appear
Prophecy of the preaching and rejection of the Gospel. 321 that these are those persons sent? Then he brings the prophet Rom.
10,16.17 in next, who says, How beautiful are the feet of them that
Is.52,7. preach the Gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! You see how by the kind of preaching he points out the preachers. For there was nothing else that these men went about telling every where, but those unspeakable good things, and the peace made by God with men. And so by disbelieving, it is not we, he implies, whom you disbelieve, but Isaiah the prophet, who spake many years ago, that we were to be sent, and to preach, and to say what we do say. If the being saved, then, came of calling upon Him, and calling upon Him from believing, and believing from hearing, and hearing from preaching, and preaching from being sent, and if they were sent, and did preach, and the prophet went round with them to point them out, and proclaim them, and say that these were they whom they shewed of so many ages ago, whose feet even they praised because of the matter of their preaching; then it is quite clear that the not believing was their own fault only. And that because God's part had been fulfilled completely.
Ver. 16, 17. But they have not all obeyed the Gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report? So then Is. 53,1. faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
Since they pressed him with another objection again to this effect, that if these were the persons sent upon the mission by God, all ought to have hearkened to them: observe St. Paul's judgment, and see how he shews that this very thing which made the confusion, did in fact do away with confusion and embarrassment. What offends you, O Jew, he would say, after so great and abundant evidence, and demonstration of the points ? that all did not submit to the Gospel? Why this very thing, when taken along with the others, is of force to certify thee of the truth of my statements, even in that some do not believe. For this too the prophet foretold. Notice his unspeakable wisdom too; how he shews more than they were looking for, or expected him to have to say in reply. For what is it that you say? he means. Is it that all have not believed the Gospel? Well! Isaiah foretold this too from of old. Or rather, not this only, but even much more than this. For
Isaiah implies" that Faith should be by Hearing." Homil. the complaint you make is, Why did not all believe? But XVIII. Isaiah
goes further than this. For what is it he says ? Lord, who hath believed our report? Then since he had ridden himself of this embarrassment by making the Prophet a bulwark against them, he again keeps to the line he was before upon. For as he had said that they must call upon Him, but that they who call must believe, and they who believe must hear first, but they who are to hear must hare preachers, and the preachers be sent, and as he had shewn that they were sent, and had preached; as he is going to bring in another objection again, taking occasion first of another quotation from the Prophet, by which he had met the objection a little back, he thus interweaves it, and connects it with what went before. For since he had
produced the Prophet as saying, Lord, who hath beliered uxon our report?? he happily seizes on the quotation, as proving droño what he says, So then faith cometh by hearing?. And this he
makes not a mere naked statement. But as the Jews were for ever seeking a sign, and the sight of the Resurrection, and were gaping after the thing much; he says, Yet the Prophet promised no such thing, but that it was by hearing that we were to believe. Hence he makes this good first, and says, so then faith cometh by hearing. And then since
this seemed a mean thing to say, see how he elevates it. 3 Ms. For he says, I was not speaking of mere hearing 3, nor of åxono
the need of hearing men's words and believing them, but I mean a great sort of hearing. For the hearing is by the word of God. They were not speaking their own, but they were telling what they learnt from God. And this is a higher thing than miracles. For we are equally bound to believe and to obey God, whether speaking or working miracles b. Since both works and miracles come of His
words. For both the heaven and every thing else was 6–8.' established in this way. After shewing then that we ought
to believe the prophets, who always speak God's words, and not to look after any thing more, he proceeds next to the objection I mentioned, and says,
a From the marginal reading, to 6 Ms. The believing and obeying which Ms. adds árià, and so completes God equally when He speaks and when the sense,
He works wonders.
Universal preaching, and Call of the Gentiles foretold. 323
10,18.19 What, he means, if the preachers were sent, and did preach what they were bid, and these did not hear? Then comes a most perfect reply to the objection.
Yes, verily, their sound went into all the earth, and their words unto the ends of the world c.
What do you say? he means. They have not heard. Why the whole world, and the ends of the earth, have heard. And have you, amongst whom the heralds abode such a long time, and of whose land they were, not heard ? Now can this ever be? Sure if the ends of the world heard, much more must you. Then again another objection.
Ver. 19. But I say, Did not Israel know?
For what if they heard, but did not know what was said, nor understand that these were the persons sent? Are they not to be forgiven for this ignorance? By no means. For Esaias had described their character in the words, How beautiful are Is. 52,7. the feet of them that preach the Gospel of peace. And before him, the lawgiver himself also. Hence he proceeds,
First Moses saith, I will provoke you to jealousy by them Deut. that are no people, and by a foolish nation I will anger you.
And so they ought even from him to have been able to distinguish the preachers, not from the fact of these disbelieving only, not from the fact of their preaching peace, not from the fact of their bringing the glad tidings of good things, not from the word being sown in every part of the world, but from the very fact of their seeing their inferiors, those of the Gentiles, in greater honour. For what they had never heard, nor their forefathers, that wisdom did these pinoson a sudden embrace. And this was a mark of such intense pour honour, as should gall them, and lead them to jealousy, and to recollection of the prophecy of Moses, which said, I will provoke you to jealousy by them that are no people. For it
< Ps. xix. 4. (V. and LXX. xviii.) Giant! God and Man in one! The mystical interpretation of this
Glad His glorious race to run. Psalm bere indicated, is acknowledged From the Eternal Father sent by the Church in using it on Christmas Back to Him His circuit bent, day. An ancient Latin hymn has this Down to hell His path descends, paraphrase on a part of it:
At the throne of God it ends. From Cbastity, His Palace bright, Origen on this passage, (t. iv. p. 627,) Forth came the Bridegroom decked and St. Aug. on the Psalm, enlarge with light,
upon its Christian interpretation.