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414 Putting on Christ by imitating His life. Homil. gift of God, and fight with His laws, and follow after what is XXIV.
a curse as if a blessing, and make the chamber of procreation a chamber for murder, and arm the woman that was given for child-bearing unto slaughter? For with a view to drawing more money by being agreeable and an object of longing to her lovers, even this she is not backward to do, so heaping upon thy head a great pile of fire. For even if the daring deed be hers, yet the causing of it is thine. Hence too come idolatries, since many, with a view to become acceptable, devise incantations, and libations, and love-potions, and countless other plans. Yet still after such great unseemliness, after slaughters, after idolatries, the thing seems to
many to belong to things indifferent, aye, and to many that pozurds have wives too. Whence the mingle of mischief is the
greater. For sorceries are applied not to the womb that is prostituted, but to the injured wife, and there are plottings without number, and invocations of devils, and necromancies, and daily wars, and truceless fightings, and home-cherished jealousies. Wherefore also Paul, after saying, not in chamberings and wantonness, proceeds, not in strife and envying, as knowing the wars that result therefrom; the upsetting of families, the wrongs done to legitimate children, the other ills unnumbered. That we may then escape from all these, let us put on Christ, and be with Him continually. For this is what putting Him on is; never being without Him, having Him evermore visible in us, through our sanctifica
tion, through our moderation. So we say of friends, such an a indúoa- one is wrapped up in such another, meaning their great
love, and keeping together incessantly. For he that is wrapped up in any thing, seems to be that which he is wrapped in. Let then Christ be seen in every part of us. And how
is He to be seen ? If thou doest His deeds. And what did Luke 9, He do? The Son of Man, He says, hath not where to lay
His head. This do thou also aim after'. He needed the use of food, and He fared upon barley loaves. He had occasion
to travel, and there were no horses or beast of burden any Mark 4, where, but He walked so far as even to be weary. He had 3 τρύμνη
need of sleep, and He lay asleep upon a pillow in the fores here sredpas
! Lying on the bare ground was a common part of asceticism,
Not exceeding our needs best for soul and body. 415 part of the ship. There was occasion for sitting down to Rom. meat, and He bade them lie down upon the grass. And His 13, 14. garments were cheap; and often He stayed alone, with no train after Him. And what He did on the Cross, and what amidst the insults, and all, in a word, that He did, do thou learn by heart and imitate. And so wilt thou have put on Christ, if *4**
• Mador thou make no provision for the flesh to fulfil the lusts thereof. For the thing has no real pleasure, since these lusts gender again others more keen, and thou wilt never find satisfaction, but wilt only make thee one great torment. As one who is in a continual thirst, even if he have ten thousand fountains hard by him, gets no good from this, as he is not able to extinguish the disorder, so is he that liveth continually in lusts. But if thou keep within what is necessary, thou wilt never come to have this fear, but all those things will go away, as well drunkennesses as wantonnesses. Eat then only so much as to break thy hunger, have only so much upon thee as to be sheltered, and do not curiously deck thy flesh with clothing, lest thou ruin it. For thou wilt make it more delicate, and wilt do injury to its healthfulness, by unnerving it with so much softness. That thou mayest have it then a meet vehicle for the soul, that the helmsman may be securely seated over the rudder, and the soldier handle his arms with ease, thou must make all parts to be fitly framed together. For it is not the having much, but requiring little, that keeps us from being injured. For the one man is afraid even if he is not wronged: this other, even if he be wronged, is in better case than those that have not been wronged, and even for this very thing is in the better spirits. Let the object of our search be then, not how we can keep any one from using us spitefully, but how even if he wish to do it, he may be without the power.
And this there is no other source whence to obtain, save by keeping to necessaries, and not coveting any thing more. For in this way we shall be able to enjoy ourselves here, and shall attain to the good things to come, by the grace and love toward man, &c.
Rom. xiv. 1, 2.
Him that is weak in the faith receive ye, but not to doubtful
disputations. For one believeth that he may eat all things; another, who is weak, eateth herbs.
HOMIL. I am aware that to most what is here said is a difficulty. XXV.
And therefore I must first give the subject of the whole of this passage, and what he wishes to correct in writing this. What does he wish to correct then? There were many of the Jews which believed, who adhered of conscience to the Law, and after their believing, still kept to the observance of meats, as not having courage yet to quit the service of the Law entirely. Then that they might not be observed if they kept from swine's flesh only, they abstained in consequence from all flesh, and ate herbs only, that what they were doing
might have more the appearance of a fast than of observance Instub of the Law. Others again were farther advanced', and kept rigo
up no one thing of the kind, who became to those, who did keep them, distressing and offensive, by reproaching them, accusing them, driving them to despondency. Therefore the blessed Paul, out of fear, lest, from a wish to be right about a trifle, they should overthrow the whole, and from a wish to bring them to indifferency about what they ate, should put them in a fair way for deserting the faith, and out of a zeal to put every thing right at once, before the fit opportunity was come, should do mischief on vital points, so by this
The weak considered, but chidden for their wenkness. 417 continual rebuking setting them adrift from their agreement Rom.
14, 1. 2. in' Christ, and so they should remain not righted in either respect: observe what great judgment he uses, and how he yies is concerns himself with both interests with his customary wisdom. For neither does he venture to say to those who rebuke, Ye are doing amiss, that he may not seem to be confirming the other in their observances; nor again, Ye are doing right, lest he should make them the more vehement accusers : but he makes his rebuke to square with each. And in appearance he is rebuking the stronger, but he pours forth all he has to say against the other in his address to these. For the kind of correction most likely to be less grating is, when a person addresses some one else, while he is striking a blow at a different person, since this does not permit the person rebuked to fly into a passion, and introduces the medicine of correction unperceived. See now with what judgment he does this, and how well-timed he is with it. For after saying, make not provision for the flesh to fulfil the lusts thereof, then he proceeds to the discussion of these points, that he might not seem to be speaking in defence of those who were the rebukers, and were for eating of any thing. For the weaker part ever requires more forethought. Wherefore he aims his blow against the strong, immediately saying as follows, Him that is weak in the faith.
one blow immediately given to him. For by calling him weak”, he points out that he is not ? kodehealthy 3. Then he adds next, receive, and points out
3άρρωστων again that he requires much attention. And this is a sign of extreme debility. Not to doubtful disputations. See, he has laid on a third stripe. For here he makes it appear that his error is of such a nature, that even those who do not transgress in the same manner, and who nevertheless admit him to their affection, and are earnestiy bent upon curing him, are at doubt.
You see how in appearance
à xsvot, i. e. so as not to have to say are independent of this question. any thing against them directly. St. b He seems to mean,
are at doubt Chrysostom turns the passage in that whether they may acknowledge such.' way more than Theodoret.
So Ecumenius seems to take it, who v. 4. which Theod. applies directly paraphrases this comment, and adds against the Judaizers. His general xai xworstolas, and separate themremarks on the rhetoric of the passage selves.'
418 The strong tempted to despise, the weak to judge. Homil. he is conversing with these, but is rebuking others secretly
and without giving offence. Then by placing them beside each other, one he gives encomiums, the other accusations. For he goes on to say, One believeth that he may eat all things, commending him on the score of his faith. Another who is weak, eateth herbs, disparaging this one again, on the
score of his weakness. Then since the blow he had given 1 xalgíur was deadly ', he comforts him again in these words, (hyperbolical
Ver. 3. Let not him that eateth, despise him that eateth ly) not.
He does not say, let him alone, nor does he say, do not blame him, nor yet, do not set him right; but do not reproach him, do not despise him, to shew they were doing a thing perfectly ridiculous. But of this he speaks in other words. Let not him which eateth not, judge him that eateth. For as the more advanced made light of these, as of little faith, and falsely healed, and spurious, and still Judaizers, so they too judged these as law-breakers, or as wholly given to gluttony. And of these it is likely that many were of the Gentiles too. Wherefore he proceeds, for God hath received him. But in the other's case he does not say this. And yet to be despised was the eater's share, as a glutton, but to be judged, his that did not eat, as of little faith. But he has made them change places, to shew that he not only does not deserve to be despised, but that he may even despise. But do I condemn him ? he means. By no means. For this is why be proceeds, for God hath received him, that is, has shewn His unspeakable grace about him, and hath freed him from all charges against him; then again he turns to the strong.
Ver. 4. Who art thou, that judgest another man's servant?
Whence it appears that they too judged, and did not despise only. To his own Master he standeth or falleth. See here is another stroke. And the indignation seems to be against the strong man, and he attacks him. When he says, Yea, he shall be holden up, he shews that he is still wavering, and requireth so much attention as to call in God as a physician for this, for God, he says, is able to make him stand. And this we say of things we are quite in despair about. Then, that he may not despair, he both gives