1 τούτου χάριν ἐγὼ παῦλος ὁ δέσμιος τοῦ Χριστοῦ [Ἰησοῦ] ὑπὲρ ὑμῶν τῶν ἐθνῶν — 2 εἴ γε ἠκούσατε τὴν οἰκονομίαν τῆς χάριτος τοῦ θεοῦ τῆς δοθείσης μοι εἰς ὑμᾶς, 3 [ὅτι] κατὰ ἀποκάλυψιν ἐγνωρίσθη μοι τὸ μυστήριον, καθὼς προέγραψα ἐν ὀλίγῳ, 4 πρὸς ὃ δύνασθε ἀναγινώσκοντες νοῆσαι τὴν σύνεσίν μου ἐν τῷ μυστηρίῳ τοῦ Χριστοῦ, 5 ὃ ἑτέραις γενεαῖς οὐκ ἐγνωρίσθη τοῖς υἱοῖς τῶν ἀνθρώπων ὡς νῦν ἀπεκαλύφθη τοῖς ἁγίοις ἀποστόλοις αὐτοῦ καὶ προφήταις ἐν πνεύματι, 6 εἶναι τὰ ἔθνη συγκληρονόμα καὶ σύσσωμα καὶ συμμέτοχα τῆς ἐπαγγελίας ἐν Χριστῷ Ἰησοῦ διὰ τοῦ εὐαγγελίου, 1 For this cause, I, Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ, for you Gentiles. 2 If yet you have; heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me towards you; 3 How that, according to revelation, the mystery has been made known to me, as I have written above in a few words; 4 * As you reading may understand my prudence in the mystery of Christ, 5 Which in other generations was not known to the sons of men, as it is now revealed to his holy apostles and prophets in the Spirit: 6 That the Gentiles should be fellow heirs and of the same body, and co-partners of his promise in Christ Jesus, by the gospel. Supra commemoravit apostolus multa Dei beneficia humano generi et ipsis apostolis collata, hic commemorat specialia Dei beneficia sibi tradita. The Apostle has previously recounted the many blessings of God granted to the human race and the Apostles themselves here he turns to God’s special blessings bestowed on himself.
Primo ergo proponit intentionem suam in generali;
secundo exponit per partes in speciali, ibi quoniam secundum revelationem, et cetera.
First he sets forth his thought in a general way.
Secondly, he explains each part of it in detail (3:3).
Circa primum duo facit. Concerning the first he does two things:
Primo ponit suam conditionem quantum ad patientiam et tribulationes quas pertulit;
secundo quantum ad dona gratiae quae Deus sibi contulit, ibi si tamen audistis, et cetera.
First, he describes his condition in respect to patience and the sufferings he endures.
Secondly, in reference to the gifts of grace God has given him (3:2).
Dicit ergo: dixi in quo et vos coaedificamini, etc., huius rei gratia, id est ut aedificemini et convertamini ad Christum, ego Paulus, qui tantus sum, quia apostolus Iesu Christi et magister gentium in fide et veritate, nunc vinctus Romae. Nam hanc epistolam de urbe scripsit, ubi in vinculis tenebatur. II Tim. II, 9: laboro usque ad vincula quasi male operans. Infra IV, 1: obsecro vos itaque ego Paulus vinctus in domino. Ex quo apparet eius tribulatio et passio in squalore carceris. He remarks: I have said that “you also are built together into an habitation of God” (Eph. 2:22); For this cause, of your edification and conversion to Christ, I, Paul, am a prisoner at Rome; my greatness is in being an Apostle of Jesus Christ and a teacher of faith and truth to the nations. He wrote this letter from Rome where he was kept under custody. I labor even into bands, as an evildoer” (2 Tim. 2:9); I therefore, a prisoner in the Lord...” (Eph. 4:1). Certainly this indicates his suffering and pain amid the prison’s squalor. Sed quia poena non facit martyrem sed causa, ideo addit suarum tribulationum causam. Duplex est autem causa pro qua quis martyrii causam prosequitur. Una si patiatur pro fide Christi, vel pro quacumque alia virtute. I Petr. IV, 15: nemo vestrum patiatur quasi homicida, aut maledicus, aut alienorum appetitor, si autem ut Christianus, non erubescat. Et quantum ad hoc dicit vinctus Christi Iesu. Alia, si patiatur pro Ecclesiae utilitate, et quantum ad hoc ait pro vobis gentibus, id est tantum intendo conversionem vestram, et verbum salutis vobis praedico, quod traditus sum carceri. II Cor. I, 6: tribulamur pro vestra exhortatione et salute. Col. I, 24: nunc gaudeo in passionibus pro vobis. Since it is not punishment that makes the martyr, but the reason [why he suffers], he inserts the cause of his tribulations. There are two causes in behalf of which someone can pursue martyrdom. One, if he should suffer for faith in Christ, or for any other virtue. “But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or a thief, or a railer, or a coveter of other men’s things. But, if as a Christian, let him not be ashamed” (1 Pet. 4:15-16). With respect to this he affirms that he is a prisoner of Jesus Christ. The other is if one suffers for the utility of the Church, in regard to which he says for you Gentiles, that is, I long so much for conversion, and thus preach the word of salvation to you, that I have been thrown into prison. “We are in tribulation for your exhortation and salvation” (2 Cor. 1:6). I now rejoice in my sufferings for you” (Col. 1:24). Consequenter cum dicit si tamen audistis, etc., ponit donum gratiae sibi commissum, quasi dicat: dico quod sum pro vobis gentibus vinctus, si tamen audistis, id est intellexistis, dispensationem gratiae, quae data est mihi pro vobis. Quod potest intelligi dupliciter. Uno modo ut dispensatio accipiatur passive, et sit sensus si tamen audistis dispensationem gratiae, etc., id est si intellexistis quod mihi hoc donum, scilicet apostolatus in gentibus, est dispensatum. Nam, ut dicitur infra IV, 7: unicuique data est gratia secundum mensuram donationis Christi. Et infra: ipse dedit quosdam quidem apostolos, quosdam autem prophetas, et cetera. Unde mihi dispensatum est a domino Christo, id est venit in sortem, gratia Dei haec ut in vobis fructum faciam. Col. I, 23: factus sum ego minister, et cetera. Dico dispensationem Dei quae data est mihi in vobis, id est eorum dispensatio tradita est mihi. Then he makes known the gift of grace given him, as though he said: I assert that I am a prisoner for you Gentiles, if yet you have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me towards you. This may be understood in two ways. In one, the dispensation is taken in a passive sense. Here, if you have heard of the dispensation of the grace means, if you have understood that this gift of being an apostle among the nations was dispensed to me. For, as is mentioned below: “To everyone of us is given grace, according to the measure of the giving of Christ... he gave some apostles, and some prophets...” (Eph. 4:7, 11). Whence the Lord Christ has given to me, that I should bear fruit s grace among you, and this has fallen to my lot by God’s grace. “I am made a minister of the Gospel” (Col. 1:23). I say the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me towards you, that is, I have been entrusted with dispensing those [graces]. Alio modo, ut dispensatio accipiatur active, ut sit sensus si tamen audistis dispensationem, etc., id est si intellexistis quod mihi datum sit, ut dona gratiae dispensem per communicationem sacramentorum, et hoc in vobis. I Cor. IV, 1: sic nos existimet homo ut ministros Christi. In a second way, dispensation is taken actively so that the sense of if you have heard of the dispensation of the grace is, if you have understood what has been granted to me: that I might dispense gifts of grace through communicating the sacraments to you. “Let a man so account of us as of the ministers of Christ and the dispensers of the mysteries of God” (1 Cor. 4:1). Consequenter cum dicit quoniam secundum revelationem, etc., manifestat conditionem suam per partes et in speciali. Circa quod duo facit, Subsequently, when he says how that, according to revelation... he makes known the several aspects of his condition in detail. In reference to which he does two things:
quia primo ponit quod pertinet ad dignitatem officii, scilicet dispensationem gratiae;
secundo illud quod pertinet ad experientiam patientiae, scilicet tribulationem, ibi quapropter peto ne deficiatis, et cetera.
First, he treats of what pertains to the dignity of his office, namely, the dispensation of grace.
Secondly, what pertains to his experience of patience, namely, tribulations (3:13).
Prima iterum in duas. The first part contains two sections:
Primo ostendit gratiae dispensationem quantum ad diversorum mysteriorum cognitionem;
secundo quantum ad ipsorum executionem, ibi cuius factus sum minister, et cetera.
First, he discusses the dispensation of grace regarding the knowledge of various mysteries.
Secondly, regarding how these [mysteries] are carried into effect (3:7).
Prima iterum in duas. Once more the first section has two divisions:
Primo ponit mysteriorum Christi sibi datam cognitionem;
secundo exponit quod sit istud mysterium, ibi esse gentes cohaeredes, et cetera.
First, he sets down the knowledge of the mysteries of Christ that was granted to him.
Secondly, he explains what that mystery is (3:6).
Circa cognitionem suam tria facit. He makes three points in regard to his knowledge:
Primo quod sit certa,
secundo quod sit plena,
tertio quod sit excellens.
First, it is certain (3:3a).
Secondly, it is full (3:3b-4).
Thirdly, it is eminent (3:5).
Certa quidem est, quia non est per humanam industriam, nec per humanam intentionem, quae falli potest, Sap. IX, 14: cogitationes enim mortalium timidae, et incertae providentiae nostrae, sed per legem divinam quae certissima est. Et ideo dicit quoniam secundum revelationem, et cetera. Gal. I, v. 12: neque enim ego ab homine accepi illud, neque didici; sed per revelationem Iesu Christi. II Cor. III, 18: nos vero revelata facie gloriam domini speculantes, et cetera. Certain it is indeed, for he did not acquire it through human effort or human thought, which can err: “The thoughts of mortal men are timid, and our counsels uncertain” (Wis.9:14). Instead it is through the divine law which is most certain. Hence he says according to revelation the mystery has been made known to me. “For neither did I receive it of man; nor did I learn it but by the revelation of Jesus Christ” (Gal. 1: 12). “We all, beholding the glory of the Lord with open face, are transformed into the same image (2 Cor. 3:18). Item plena est, quia perfecte revelatum est mihi, et committo vestro iudicio, quia ego in verbis paucis hoc expressi, in quibus cognoscere potestis quod perfectam cognitionem habeam de mysteriis fidei. Et quantum ad hoc dicit sicut scripsi in brevi, id est in paucis verbis, ita aperte, quod eo modo hoc potestis legentes intelligere. Cant. IV, 11: favus distillans labia tua, et cetera. Labium quidem breve quid est. Et sic labia doctoris sunt favus distillans, quando brevibus et paucis verbis multa et magna insinuat. Sed attende, ut dicit Augustinus, quod debet intendere hoc doctor, quod scilicet intelligatur. Et quamdiu ad hoc laborat, verba sua non sunt superflua, sed si postquam intelligitur, eis immoratur, superflua sunt eius verba. Dicit autem prudentiam meam, secundum illud Prov. IX, 10: scientia sanctorum prudentia. Quae quidem non est mundana sed divina et caelestis, propter quod dicit in mysterio Christi. Moreover, it is a full [knowledge] since it is revealed perfectly to me, and I entrust it to your judgment. I write of it in few words, in which you can recognize that I enjoy a perfect knowledge of the mysteries of faith. And in regard to this he says as I have written above in a few words clearly, that as you are reading, you may understand. “Thy lips... are as a dropping honeycomb” (Cant. 4:11). Lips are small; and those of a doctor are as “a dropping honeycomb” when he conveys many and profound thoughts in a few short words. Nevertheless, note that Augustine remarks how a doctor should aim at being understood. As long as he strives for this his words are not superfluous, but if he remains on a point after he is understood he wastes his words. He adds my prudence since “the knowledge of the holy is prudence” (Prov. 9:10). This is not worldly but divine and heavenly, for which reason he states in the mystery of Christ. Est etiam excellens, quia solis apostolis est revelata; unde subdit quod aliis generationibus non est agnitum. Licet enim mysteria Christi prophetis et patriarchis fuerint revelata, non tamen ita clare sicut apostolis. Nam prophetis et patriarchis fuerunt revelata in quadam generalitate; sed apostolis manifestata sunt quantum ad singulares et determinatas circumstantias. It is also eminent since it was revealed to the Apostles alone. Hence he adds which in other generations was not known. For although the mysteries of Christ were revealed to the prophets and patriarchs, they were more clearly revealed to the Apostles. To the prophets and patriarchs they were revealed in vague generality; but they were shown in their singular and determinate circumstances to the Apostles. Hoc autem quod dicit quod aliis generationibus, etc., potest dupliciter exponi. Uno modo ut per generationes tempora generationum accipiantur, iuxta illud Ps. CXLIV, v. 13: dominatio tua in omni generatione, et generatione. Et tunc est sensus, quod aliis generationibus, id est temporibus, non est agnitum filiis hominum, id est rationalibus creaturis, scilicet nec hominibus, nec Angelis. Matth. XI, 25: abscondisti haec a sapientibus et prudentibus, et revelasti ea parvulis. Sicut nunc revelatum est sanctis apostolis eius et prophetis in spiritu, ipsis scilicet in eo spiritu novi testamenti interpretantibus Scripturas, et explanantibus legem. Lc. c. VIII, 9: vobis datum est nosse mysterium regni Dei, caeteris autem, et cetera. Lc. X, 23: beati oculi qui vident quae vos videtis, et infra XXIV: dico autem vobis, quod multi reges et prophetae voluerunt videre quae vos videtis, et non viderunt, et cetera. Other generations admits of a twofold explanation. In one, by generations the times of the generations are understood, as in Psalm 144 (13): “Thy dominion endureth throughout all generations.” Then the meaning is which in other generations, that is, times, [the mystery] was not known to the sons of men, to no rational creature, neither to men nor to angels. “Thou has hid these things from the wise and the prudent, and hast revealed them to little ones” (Mt. 11:25). As it is now revealed to his holy Apostles and prophets in the Spirit, to them, namely, who interpret the Scriptures and explain the Law in the spirit of the New Testament. “To you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God; but to the rest in parables” (Lk. 8:10). “And turning to his disciples he said: Blessed are the eyes that see the things which you see. For I say to you that many prophets and kings have desired to see the things that you see and have not seen them” (Lk. 10:23-24). Alio modo potest exponi ut per generationes accipiantur homines generati, secundum illud Matth. XXIII, 36: venient haec omnia super generationem istam, et cetera. Et tunc est sensus quod aliis generationibus, id est hominibus in praecedentibus generationibus generatis, non est cognitum, etc., sicut prius. Unde Is. LIII, 1: quis credidit auditui nostro, et brachium domini cui revelatum est? Another interpretation takes generations in the sense of human generations, as in Matthew 23 (36): “All these things shall come upon this generation.” Then the meaning is which in other generations was not known to those men, that is, who were born in the preceding generations. The rest [is interpreted] as above. “Who hath believed our report? And to whom is the arm of the Lord revealed?” (Is. 53:1). Sed hoc quidem sacramentum fidei revelatum est aliquibus patribus veteris testamenti, secundum illud Io. VIII, 56: Abraham pater vester exultavit ut videret diem meum; vidit, et gavisus est. Et etiam prophetis, secundum illud Ioel II, 28: post haec effundam de spiritu meo super omnem carnem, et prophetabunt filii vestri et filiae vestrae. Sed eis quidem revelatum est in quadam generalitate, apostolis vero clare et perfecte. Et hoc propter tria. Primo quia ipsi apostoli habuerunt revelationem immediate a filio Dei, secundum illud Io. I, 18: unigenitus filius qui est in sinu patris, ipse enarravit. Prophetae vero et patres veteris testamenti, ipsi edocti sunt per Angelos, vel per aliquas similitudines. Unde dicitur Is. VI, 6: volavit ad me unus de Seraphim, et in manu eius calculus, quem, et cetera. Et ideo ipsi apostoli clarius acceperunt.
secundo, quia non in figuris et in aenigmatibus, sicut prophetae, viderunt, sed revelata facie gloriam domini speculantes. Lc. X, 23: beati oculi qui vident quae vos videtis.
tertio, quia apostoli constituti fuerunt executores et dispensatores huius sacramenti, et ideo oportebat quod melius ipsi essent instructi quam alii. Io. IV, 38: alii laboraverunt, et vos in labores eorum introistis.
But certainly this sacrament of faith was revealed to some of the Old Testament fathers, as is implied in John 8 (56): “Abraham, your father, rejoiced that he might see my day; he saw it and was glad.” And [it was also revealed] to the prophets, according to Joel 2 (28): “And it shall come to pass after this, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy.” But it was revealed to them in certain generalities, whereas [it was disclosed] to the Apostles clearly and completely. Three reasons account for this. First, because the Apostles received the revelation immediately from the Son of God: “The only begotten Son who is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him” (Jn. 1:18). The prophets and fathers of the Old Testament, on the other hand, were taught by angels, or through some similar imagery: “And one of the seraphims flew to me: and in his hand was a live coal which he had taken with the tongs off the altar” (Is. 6:6). Hence, the Apostles received it more clearly. Secondly, they did not see in symbols and riddles as the prophets did, but were given a plain view of the Lord’s glory: “Blessed are the eyes that see the things which you see” (Lk. 10:23). Thirdly, since the Apostles were meant to carry into effect and communicate this sacrament, it was necessary for them to be more instructed in it than others. “Others have labored; and you have entered into their labors” (Jn. 4:38). Consequenter cum dicit esse gentes, etc., manifestat quid sit illud sacramentum. Circa quod sciendum est quod Iudaei triplicem praerogativam habebant respectu gentilium, scilicet promissionis haereditatis. Rom. c. IV, 13: non enim per legem promissio Abrahae, aut semini eius, ut haeres esset mundi, sed per iustitiam fidei. Ps. XV, 5: dominus pars haereditatis meae, et cetera. Item per specialem a gentibus aliis distinctionem et electionem. Deut. VII, 6: te elegit dominus Deus tuus, ut sis ei populus peculiaris de cunctis populis qui sunt super terram. Unde Ps. XCIX, 3: nos autem populus eius et oves pascuae eius. Cant. VI, 8: una est columba mea, perfecta mea, et cetera. Item per Christi promissionem. Gen. XII, 3: in te benedicentur universae cognationes terrae. Consequently, when he states that the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, he makes known what the sacrament is. In reference to it, it should be recognized that the Jews enjoyed three prerogatives with respect to the Gentiles. They had the promised inheritance: “For not through the law was the promise to Abraham or to his seed, that he should be heir of the world; but through the justice of faith” (Rom. 4:13); “The Lord is the portion of my inheritance” (Ps. 15:5). Another was their special election, they were set apart from the Gentiles: “The Lord thy God hath chosen thee to be his peculiar people of all peoples that are upon the earth” (Deut. 7:6). “We are his people and the sheep of his pasture” (Ps. 99:3); “One is my dove: my perfect one is but one” (Cant. 6:8). Finally, they had the promise of a Christ: “In thee shall all the kindred of the earth be blessed” (Gen. 12:3). Haec autem tria gentes non habebant. Supra II, 12: qui eratis illo tempore sine Christo, alienati a conversatione Israel. Sed ad haec tria recepti sunt per fidem. Primo quidem, quantum ad participationem haereditatis, et, quantum ad hoc, dicit cohaeredes, scilicet ipsis Iudaeis in haereditate caelesti. Matth. VIII, 11: multi ab oriente et occidente venient, et recumbent cum Abraham, Isaac et Iacob in regno caelorum, et cetera.
secundo ad speciale collegium fidelium, et, quantum ad hoc, dicit et concorporales, id est in unum corpus. Io. X, 16: alias oves habeo quae non sunt ex hoc ovili, id est gentes, et illas oportet me adducere, et vocem meam audient, et fiet unum ovile et unus pastor.
tertio, ad participationem gratiae repromissae, et quantum ad hoc dicit et comparticipes, scilicet promissionum quae factae sunt Abrahae. Rom. XV, 8: dico autem Christum fuisse ministrum circumcisionis propter veritatem Dei ad confirmandas promissiones patrum, gentes autem super misericordia honorare Deum.
These three the Gentiles did not enjoy: “You were at that time without Christ, being aliens to Israel’s way of life” (Eph. 2:12 ‘). By faith, however, they have received them. First, they share in the inheritance; concerning this he says fellow heirs with the Jews in the heavenly inheritance. “And I say to you that many shall come from the east and the west, and shall sit down with Abraham and Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven” (Mt. 8:11). Second, [they are admitted] to the chosen community of believers; thus he states of the same body, that is, in one body. “And other sheep I have that are not of this fold,” namely, the Gentiles, “them also I must bring. And they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold and one shepherd” (Jn. 10:16). Third, [they are admitted] to a participation in the promised grace; he says they are co-partners of his promise, the promises made to Abraham. “For I say that Christ Jesus was minister of the circumcision for the truth of God, to confirm the promises made unto the fathers; but that the Gentiles are to glorify God for his mercy” (Rom. 15:8-9). Et haec omnia consecutae sunt gentes non per Moysem, sed in Christo. Io. I, 17: lex per Moysem data est, gratia et veritas per Iesum Christum facta est. II Petr. I, 4: per quem maxima et pretiosa nobis promissa donavit, et cetera. Item, nec per impletionem legis, quia hoc est iugum quod neque patres nostri, neque nos portare potuimus, ut dicitur Act. XV, 10, sed per Evangelium, per quod omnes salvantur. Rom. I, 16: non enim erubesco Evangelium, virtus enim Dei est in salutem omni credenti. I Cor. XV, 1: notum vobis facio Evangelium quod praedicavi vobis, quod et accepistis, in quo et statis, per quod et salvamini. The Gentiles have acquired all this, not through Moses, but in Christ. “For the Law was given by Moses; grace and truth came by Jesus Christ” (Jn. 1:17), “by whom he hath given us most great and precious promises” (2 Pet. 1:4). Moreover, these did not come through fulfilling the law, whose burden “neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear” (Ac. 15: 10), but by the gospel through which all men are saved. “For I am not ashamed of the gospel. For it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first and to the Greek” (Rom. 1:16). “Now I make known unto you, brethren, the gospel which I preached to you, which also you have received and wherein you stand. By which also you are saved” (1 Cor. 15:1-2).
7 οὗ ἐγενήθην διάκονος κατὰ τὴν δωρεὰν τῆς χάριτος τοῦ θεοῦ τῆς δοθείσης μοι κατὰ τὴν ἐνέργειαν τῆς δυνάμεως αὐτοῦ. 8 ἐμοὶ τῷ ἐλαχιστοτέρῳ πάντων ἁγίων ἐδόθη ἡ χάρις αὕτη, τοῖς ἔθνεσιν εὐαγγελίσασθαι τὸ ἀνεξιχνίαστον πλοῦτος τοῦ Χριστοῦ, 9 καὶ φωτίσαι [πάντασ] τίς ἡ οἰκονομία τοῦ μυστηρίου τοῦ ἀποκεκρυμμένου ἀπὸ τῶν αἰώνων ἐν τῷ θεῷ τῷ τὰ πάντα κτίσαντι, 7 Of whom I am made a minister, according to the gift of the grace of God, which is given to me according to the operation of his power. 8 To me, the least of all the saints, is given this grace, to preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ; 9 And to enlighten all men, that they may see what is the dispensation of the mystery which hath been hidden from eternity in God who created all things. Postquam ostendit apostolus esse sibi gratiam dispensatam quantum ad mysteriorum divinorum cognitionem, hic ostendit hoc idem quantum ad ipsorum mysteriorum executionem. Et circa hoc duo facit. After the Apostle has discussed the grace given him relative to the knowledge of divine mysteries (3:3), he indicates the same with respect to carrying these mysteries themselves into effect. Concerning this he makes two points:
Primo commemorat auxilium gratiae praestitum sibi ad exequendum;
secundo, ostendit sibi commissum officium ministerii, ibi mihi omnium sanctorum minimo, et cetera.
First, he acknowledges the assistance of grace granted him to put them into practice.
Secondly, he speaks of the ministerial duty confided to him (3:8).
Prima in duas. The first has two divisions:
Primo tangit ministeriorum divinorum executionem;
secundo ostendit auxilium sibi datum ad exequendum, ibi secundum donum gratiae, et cetera.
First, he briefly treats of putting divine mysteries into effect.
Secondly, he shows how help has been given him (3:7b).
Executio autem divinorum sibi commissa est per modum ministerii, et quantum ad hoc dicit: dico quod hoc ministerium est mihi commissum, scilicet gentes esse cohaeredes per Evangelium, per quod gentes participes fiunt promissionis Dei in Christo Iesu, cuius ego Paulus factus sum minister, etc.; quasi dicat: non ego impleo vel exequor ut a me vel ut meum, sed sicut ministerium quod Dei est. Act. IX, 15: vas electionis est mihi iste, et cetera. Unde apostolus I Cor. IV, 1: sic nos existimet homo ut ministros Christi et dispensatores mysteriorum Dei. The realization of divine realities was committed to him by way of a ministry. He says in relation to this: I assert that this ministry has been entrusted to me, that the Gentiles are co-heirs by the Gospel and through it they share as well in God’s promise in Christ Jesus, of whom I am made a minister. As though he stated: I do not fulfill or carry out [this mystery] as if it came from me or was mine, but as a ministry belonging to God. ‘Tor this man is to me a vessel of election, to carry my name before the Gentiles” (Act. 9:15). “Let a man so account of us as of the ministers of Christ and the dispensers of the mysteries of God” (I Cor. 4:1). Deinde cum dicit secundum donum gratiae, etc., tangit auxilium sibi praestitum ad ministeriorum executionem. Huiusmodi autem auxilium duplex fuit. Unum quidem ipsa facultas exequendi, aliud ipsa operatio, sive actualitas. Facultatem autem dat Deus infundendo virtutem et gratiam, per quas efficitur homo potens et aptus ad operandum; sed ipsam operationem confert inquantum operatur in nobis interius movendo et instigando ad bonum. Et ideo hoc accipiens apostolus a Deo, dicit quantum ad primum: dico quod factus sum minister, sed certe non meis meritis, nec virtute propria, sed secundum donum gratiae Dei quae data est mihi, quia scilicet idoneus efficior ad executionem divinorum mysteriorum, qui fui prius persecutor. I Cor. XV. 10: plus omnibus laboravi, non ego, sed gratia Dei mecum. Quantum ad secundum dicit secundum operationem, quam Deus efficit, inquantum virtus eius operatur in nobis et velle et perficere pro bona voluntate. When he writes according to the gift of the grace of God he touches on the aid granted him to carry out the mysteries. This type of assistance was twofold. One was the capacity to put them into effect, and another was the very actions or activities themselves. God bestows the capability by infusing the virtue and grace through which a man is able and fit for action; while he confers the action itself insofar as be moves us interiorly and spurs us on to good. Receiving both from God, the Apostle acknowledges the first in saying: I am made a minister, certainly not on my own merits, nor by my own virtue, but according to the gift of the grace of God which is given to me. For I was made worthy to realize the divine mysteries which previously I had persecuted. I have labored more abundantly than all they. Yet not I, but the grace of God with me” (1 Cor. 15:10). In reference to the second he states according to the operation which God effects inasmuch as his power causes us both to will and to act in accord with good will. Potest autem hoc aliter exponi secundum Glossam, ut quod dictum est modo referatur ad praecedentia, scilicet dicatur quod esse gentes cohaeredes et concorporales, et comparticipes promissionis eius, scilicet Dei patris, hoc quidem donum dedit Deus gentibus in Christo, id est per Christum, et hoc secundum operationem virtutis eius, id est per hoc quod potenter operatus est, suscitando Christum a morte. This can be interpreted in another way according to a Gloss. What is said here refers to what immediately preceded (v. 6). For the pagans to have become co-heirs, and of the same body, and co-partners of God the Father’s promise-this is a gift God gave the Gentiles in Christ. That is, they come through Christ, according to the operation of his power in that he has powerfully acted in raising Christ from the dead. Consequenter cum dicit mihi enim sanctorum minimo, etc., ostendit officium commissum, cuius quidem commissionis gratia commendatur ex tribus. Next (v. 8), he speaks of the duty entrusted to him; the grace of such a commission has three qualities to recommend it:
Primo quidem ex personae suae conditione;
secundo ex commissorum magnitudine, ibi evangelizare investigabiles, etc.;
tertio ex fructus utilitate, ibi ut innotescat, et cetera.
First, the condition of the person himself [to whom it is entrusted].
Secondly, the greatness of what is confided to him (3:8b).
Thirdly, the good that results as its fruit (3:10 ff.).
Commendat igitur officium sibi commissum ex personae conditione. Si enim rex aliquis, aliquod quidem magnum officium alicui magno principi et excellenti committeret, non multum ei magnam gratiam faceret, quantum ad hunc magnum, si poneret in magno officio; sed si magnum et arduissimum officium alicui parvo committat, multum eum magnificat, et magnam gratiam facit ei, et tanto magis quanto officii excellentia excedit ipsum. Secundum ergo hunc modum Paulus gratiam sibi commissi officii commendat, dicens mihi enim omnium sanctorum minimo data est gratia haec. Et vocat se minimum, non ex potestate sibi commissa, sed ex consideratione status praeteriti. I Cor. XV, 9: ego sum minimus apostolorum, qui non sum dignus vocari apostolus, quoniam persecutus sum Ecclesiam Dei. Is. LX, 22: minimus erit in mille, et parvulus in gentem fortissimam. Et hoc in gentibus, id est inter gentes, Gal. II, 8-9: qui enim operatus est Petro in apostolatum circumcisionis, operatus est et mihi inter gentes. Et cum cognovissent gratiam Dei, quae data est mihi inter gentes, et cetera. The office confided to him is recommended from this person’s condition. For if some king entrusted an important office to a great and high-ranking prince, he would not be doing him a very great favor since he would be placing an important person in an important position. But if he entrusts a great and exceedingly difficult duty to an insignificant person, he would greatly honor him and do him a considerable favor; the more so in proportion as the eminence of the office exceeds him. In this fashion Paul praises the gratuity of the office confided to himself: To me, the least of all the saints, is given this grace. He calls himself the least, not because of the power granted him, but in recognition of his former state: “For I am the least of the apostles, who am not worthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God” (1 Cor. 15:9). “The least shall become a thousand, and a little one a most strong nation” (Is. 60:22). This [duty was to be fulfilled] among the Gentiles, that is, throughout the nations. “For he who wrought in Peter to the apostleship of the circumcision wrought in me also among the Gentiles. And, when they had known the grace that was given to me, James and Cephas and John, who seemed to be pillars, gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the Gentiles, and they unto the circumcision” (Gal. 2:8-9). Secundo commendatur huiusmodi commissionis gratia ex officii magnitudine, quod est revelare et manifestare secreta Dei, quae sunt magna et occulta, puta, de magnitudine Christi et de salute fidelium facta per eum. De his autem duobus est totum Evangelium. In the second place (3:8b), the grace of his mission is commended by reason of the magnitude of his task: to reveal and clarify the great and hidden secrets of God. Think of the greatness of Christ and of the salvation of those who believe which he accomplished. The entire Gospel concerns these two. Quantum ad primum dicit evangelizare, etc., quasi dicat: haec gratia data est mihi ut annuntiem bonum. I Cor. I, 17: non misit me Christus baptizare, sed evangelizare. Et ibidem IX, 16: vae enim mihi si non evangelizavero. Et bonum hoc, scilicet investigabiles Christi divitias, quae sunt verae divitiae. Supra c. II, 4: Deus autem qui dives est in misericordia, et cetera. Rom. II, 4: an divitias bonitatis eius, et patientiae, et longanimitatis contemnis? et cetera. Rom. X, 12: dives in omnes qui invocant illum. Quasi dicat: divitiae istae vere investigabiles sunt, quia tanta est misericordia eius, quod intelligi vel investigari non possit. Is. XXXIII, 6: divitiae salutis sapientia, et scientia, timor domini ipse thesaurus eius, scilicet Christi, quia in Christo abundantissime fuit timor domini. Is. XI, 3: replebit eum spiritus timoris domini. Regarding the first he says to preach the unsearchable riches of Christ, as if to assert: To proclaim the good is the grace given me. “Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel” (I Cor. 1: 17). “Woe unto me if I preach not the gospel” (I Cor. 9:16). This good is the unsearchable riches of Christ which are true wealth. “God who is rich in mercy... hath quickened us together in Christ” (Eph. 2:4); “Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness, and patience, and longsuffering?” (Rom. 2:4); “The same is Lord over all, rich unto all that call upon him” (Rom. 10:12). These riches are unsearchable indeed, he affirms, since they are as great as his mercy which can be neither understood nor analyzed. “Riches of salvation, wisdom and knowledge: the fear of the Lord is his treasure” (Is. 33:6), referring to Christ since reverence of the Lord found its most plentiful expression in Christ. “And he shall be filled with the spirit of the fear of the Lord” (Is. 11:3). In Christo enim sunt omnes thesauri sapientiae et scientiae absconditi Col. II, 3, et haec sunt investigabiles, quia perfecte sapientia et scientia Christi investigari non possunt. Iob XI, 7: reperies forsan vestigia Dei, et usque ad perfecte omnipotentem? Quasi dicat: non. Nam per creaturas, in quibus relucet vestigium creatoris, perveniri non potest ad perfectam eius cognitionem. Huiusmodi autem divitias stupens admiratur apostolus, dicens, Rom. XI, 33, o altitudo divitiarum sapientiae et scientiae Dei, quam, et cetera. Eccli. I, 3: sapientiam Dei praecedentem omnia quis investigabit? In Christ “are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Col. 2:3). They are unsearchable because Christ’s wisdom and knowledge cannot be analyzed. “Peradventure thou wilt comprehend the steps of God, and wilt find out the Almighty perfectly?” (Job 11:7). The implied answer is, No. For creatures, in whom a trace of their Creator is visible, do not provide us with a perfect understanding of Him. Struck by the wonder of these riches, the Apostle exclaimed: “O the depth of the riches of the wisdom and of the knowledge of God! How incomprehensible are his judgments, and how unsearchable his waysl” (Rom. 11:33). “Who hath searched out the wisdom of God that goeth before all things?” (Ecclus. 1:3). Quantum ad secundum, id est ad manifestandam salutem fidelibus ex Christo provenientem, dicit et illuminare omnes, non solum Iudaeos, sed etiam gentiles per praedicationem et miracula. Eccli. XXIV, 45: illuminabo omnes sperantes in domino. Act. c. IX, 15: vas electionis est, et cetera. Matth. V, v. 14: vos estis lux mundi. Illuminare, inquam, quantum in me est omnes, scilicet credere volentes. I Tim. II, 4: qui omnes homines vult salvos fieri, et ad agnitionem veritatis venire. Ad hoc scilicet ut intelligant quae sit dispensatio sacramenti, quia nihil valent ista nisi dispensentur; quasi dicat: de hoc illuminabo, scilicet quam mirabilis et ex quanta dilectione sit facta adimpletio arcanae redemptionis. Huiusmodi autem divitiae investigabiles, per Christum vobis dispensatae sunt. Concerning the second—to make known the salvation which comes from Christ to those who believe—he says to enlighten all men, not only the Jews, but the Gentiles as well, through preaching and miracles. I will enlighten all that hope in the Lord” (Ecclus. 24:45). “This man is to me a vessel of election, to carry my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel” (Ac. 9:15); “You are the light of the world” (Mt. 5:14). To enlighten, I say, insofar as I can, all who want to believe. For God “will have all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Tim. 2:4) in order that they might understand what is the dispensation of the mystery. For these [mysteries] would be of no use if they were not imparted [to men]. As if he claimed: I shall enlighten men on how awe-inspiring the mystery of our redemption is, and from what an immense love it was accomplished. Inexhaustible riches of this sort are imparted to you through Christ. Sed quia dici posset: istud quod dicis, etsi sit magnum, omnes tamen hoc sciunt; ideo ad hoc respondet apostolus dicens, quod non, quia absconditi a saeculis. Ubi sciendum est quod omnia quae sunt in effectu, latent virtute in suis causis, sicut in virtute solis continentur omnia quae sunt in generabilibus et corruptibilibus. Sed tamen ibi quaedam sunt abscondita, quaedam manifesta. Nam calor est manifeste in igne; aliquorum vero ratio, quae occulto modo producit, latet in eo. Deus autem est omnium rerum causa efficiens, sed producit quaedam, quorum ratio potest esse manifesta, illa scilicet quae mediantibus causis secundis producit. Aliqua vero sunt in eo abscondita, illa scilicet quae immediate per seipsum producit. Yet it might be objected: What you speak of is known to all, even if it is great. The Apostle gives a negative reply, it hath been hidden from eternity. Here it should be noted how everything present in an effect is concealed in the power of its causes. For example, in the power of the sun is contained everything that exists among the realities which come into being and cease to be. Nevertheless, certain [effects] are hidden there, and others are evident. For instance, heat is evidently in fire while the intelligibility of other [effects], which it produces in a more hidden manner, are said to be concealed in it. Now God is the efficient cause of everything; be makes some things whose intelligibility is open [to investigation], namely, those created through the mediation of second causes. Other effects, however, which he immediately produces by himself are hidden in him. Et quia sacramentum humanae redemptionis per seipsum operatus est Deus, ideo in eo solo hoc sacramentum est absconditum. Et hoc est quod dicit absconditi a saeculis in Deo, id est in sola notitia Dei. Investigare autem secreta primae causae maximum est. I Cor. II, 6: sapientiam loquimur inter perfectos: sapientiam vero non huius saeculi, neque principum huius saeculi, qui destruuntur, sed loquimur Dei sapientiam in mysterio, quae abscondita est, quam praedestinavit Deus ante saecula. Qui, inquam, omnia creavit. Since God accomplished by himself the mystery of buman redemption, this mystery is hidden in him alone. Thus he states that it is hidden from eternity in God, known to him only. Yet, to seek out the secrets of the First Cause is the greatest [wisdom]: “We speak wisdom among the perfect; yet not the wisdom of this world, neither of the princes of this world that come to nought. But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, a wisdom which is hidden, which God ordained before the world” (1 Cor. 2:6-7). He, I say, who created all things.
10 ἵνα γνωρισθῇ νῦν ταῖς ἀρχαῖς καὶ ταῖς ἐξουσίαις ἐν τοῖς ἐπουρανίοις διὰ τῆς ἐκκλησίας ἡ πολυποίκιλος σοφία τοῦ θεοῦ, 11 κατὰ πρόθεσιν τῶν αἰώνων ἣν ἐποίησεν ἐν τῷ Χριστῷ Ἰησοῦ τῷ κυρίῳ ἡμῶν, 12 ἐν ᾧ ἔχομεν τὴν παρρησίαν καὶ προσαγωγὴν ἐν πεποιθήσει διὰ τῆς πίστεως αὐτοῦ. 10 That the manifold wisdom of God may be made known to the principalities and powers in heavenly places through the church, 11 According to a pre-determining of the ages which he made in Christ Jesus our Lord; 12 In whom we have assurance and access with confidence by the faith of him. Posita dignitate officii ex magnitudine commissorum, hic commendat apostolus officii dignitatem ex utilitate effectus, quae quidem est revelatio magnarum rerum magnis personis. Sunt autem circa hoc tria consideranda. Once he has set forth the dignity of his office that arises from the magnitude of what it entrusts to him (3:8), the Apostle here gives evidence of his office’s worth from the utility of its effect. This consists in the revelation of great realities to eminent persons. Three points are to be considered regarding this:
Primo quidem quibus sit revelatum, et quantum ad hoc dicit ut innotescat principatibus, etc.;
secundo per quem reveletur, quia per Ecclesiam;
tertio quid reveletur, quia multiformis sapientia Dei.
First, to whom the revelation is directed (3:10a).
Secondly, through whom it is made known, at through the church (3:10b).
Thirdly, what is revealed, namely, the manifold wisdom of God (3:10a).
Ad cuius quidem sapientiae descriptionem quatuor tangit apostolus. The Apostle touches on four points in his description of this wisdom:
Primo eius multiplicitatem, ibi multiformis sapientia Dei;
secundo modum multiplicitatis, ibi praefinitionem saeculorum;
tertio multiplicitatis auctoritatem; unde subdit quam fecit in Christo Iesu domino nostro;
quarto auctoritatis effectum, ibi in quo habemus fiduciam et accessum.
First, its many facets (3:10).
Secondly, how it is so manifold (3:11a).
Thirdly, the source of this multiplicity (3:11b).
Fourthly, the effect of its coming from that source (3:12).
Est ergo sapientia, quae revelatur, multiformis, et haec quidem multiformitas tangitur Iob XI, 5: utinam Deus loqueretur tecum et aperiret labia sua tibi, ut ostenderet tibi secreta sapientiae, et quam multiplex sit lex eius, et cetera. Sap. VII, 22: est enim in illa, scilicet sapientia divina, spiritus intelligentiae, sanctus, unicus et multiplex, et cetera. Multiplex scilicet in effectibus; unicus, scilicet in essentia. The wisdom which is revealed is manifold. Job 11 (5) briefly speaks of this diversity: “And I wish that God would speak with thee, and would open his lips to thee, that he might shew thee the secrets of wisdom, and that his law is manifold.” “For in her,” namely, divine wisdom, “is the spirit of understanding: holy, one, manifold” (Wis. 7:22). Manifold that is, in her effects, yet one in her essence. Modus autem multiplicitatis revelatae scientiae est secundum praefinitionem saeculorum, id est distinctionem et determinationem diversorum temporum. Deus enim ordinat alia esse in uno tempore, alia in alio, et secundum hoc huiusmodi sapientia multiformis dicitur secundum praefinitionem saeculorum, quia diversa tempora diversis ornat effectibus. The way this revealed knowledge is many-sided is according to a pre-determining of the ages, meaning the differentiation and limitation of the various times. For God plans something to exist at one time, and others at another time. In this fashion such wisdom is referred to as manifold according to a pre-determining of the ages since he provides different times with different events. Auctor autem huius multiplicitatis est Christus; unde dicit quam fecit Deus in Christo Iesu domino nostro, id est per Christum. Ipse enim mutat tempora et statum eorum. Hebr. I, 1: multifarie multisque modis, etc., per quem fecit et saecula. Potest autem hoc quod dicit quam fecit, etc., referri vel ad aeternam praedestinationem: nam ipsam fecit pater in filio suo. Supra I, 4: elegit nos in ipso ante mundi constitutionem, ut essemus sancti. Ipse enim filius est sapientia patris, nihil autem diffinit, vel praeordinat aliquid, nisi per sapientiam. Vel potest referri ad praedestinationis aeternae completionem, quam Deus pater per filium consummavit. I Cor. X, 11: in quos fines saeculorum devenerunt, supple sumus. The source of this multiplicity is Christ; hence he says which God made in Christ Jesus our Lord, that is, through Christ. For he himself alters times and their states: “God, who, at sundry times and in diverse manners, spoke in times past to the fathers by the prophets, last of all in these days hath spoken to, us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the ages” (Heb. 1:1-2). Which he made in Christ Jesus may refer to eternal predestination since the Father accomplishes this in his Son: “He chose us in him [Christ] before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy” (Eph. 1:4). For the Son himself is the wisdom of the Father, and nothing is determined or foreordained except through wisdom. Or which he made in Christ Jesus may refer to the fulfillment of eternal predestination which God the Father brings to completion through the Son. We are those “upon whom the ends of the ages have come” (1 Cor. 10:11). Effectus autem auctoris est magnitudo fructus, qui nobis a Christo provenit, quod ponitur, cum dicit in quo habemus fiduciam, et cetera. Circa quod duo facit. The effect of this source [auctoris] consists in a great fruit which comes to us from Christ. This is expressed at in whom we have assurance... Concerning this he does two things:
Primo ponit bona quae recipimus;
secundo appropriatum per quod recipimus, ibi per fidem eius.
First, he puts down the blessings we receive.
Secondly, he designates through what we receive them (3:12b).
Bona autem quae recipimus, sunt duo: unum quod pertinet ad spem obtinendi, et quantum ad hoc dicit in quo, scilicet Christo, habemus fiduciam, scilicet veniendi ad caelum et aeternam haereditatem. Io. XVI, 33: confidite, ego vici mundum. II Cor. III, 4: fiduciam talem habemus per Christum ad Deum. Aliud bonum pertinet ad obtinendi facultatem, et quantum ad hoc dicit et accessum in confidentia, scilicet habemus. Hebr. IV, v. 16: adeamus cum fiducia ad thronum gloriae eius. Ier. III, 19: patrem vocabis me, et post me ingredi non cessabis. Rom. V, 2: per quem accessum habemus per fidem in gratia ista, in qua stamus, et gloriamur in spe gloriae filiorum Dei. There are two goods which we obtain. One pertains to the hope of attaining [to our reward]; and in reference to this he says in whom, namely Christ, we have assurance of arriving at heaven and our eternal inheritance. “Have confidence, I have overcome the world” (Jn. 16:33). “Such assurance we have, through Christ, towards God” (2 Cor. 3:4). The second good pertains to the power of attaining to [our reward]; in respect to which he states that we have access with confidence. “Let us go, therefore, with confidence to the throne of his glory” (Heb. 4:16). “Thou shalt call me father and shall not cease to walk after me” (Jer. 3:19). “By whom [Christ] also we have access through faith into this grace wherein we stand; and glory in the hope of the glory of the sons of God” (Rom. 5:2). Per quid autem haec dentur nobis, subdit, dicens per fidem eius, scilicet Christi. Rom. V, 1: iustificati ex fide pacem habemus ad Deum per dominum nostrum Iesum Christum. The means by which these are given us is by the faith of him, namely, of Christ. “Being justified, therefore, by faith, let us have peace with God, through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Rom. 5: 1). Ut ergo breviter comprehendamus, dico quod revelata est sapientia Dei multiformis varietatis, secundum distinctionem et praefinitionem saeculorum, quae dedit nobis fiduciam et accessum ad patrem per fidem eius. That we might summarize [what has been said above] briefly, I assert that God’s many-faceted wisdom is revealed in the differentiation and pre-determining of the ages, which gives us assurance and access to the Father by faith in him. Quibus autem revelata sit ista multiformis sapientia Dei ostendit, et tunc sumitur ista littera superius dimissa, ut innotescat principatibus et potestatibus, ex qua apparet magnitudo. Et quia etiam in terris sunt principes et potestates, addit in caelestibus, id est in caelo, ubi nos erimus. Notandum est autem hic, quod principatus et potestates sunt duo ordines, qui ex ipsorum nomine praeeminentiam in operando designant. Potestatis ordo ordinatur ad reprimendum impedimenta salutis, sed ordo principatuum praeest et iniungit ad bene exequendum. Quod autem ad ordinem principatus pertineat regulare, patet per illud Ps. LXVII, 26: praevenerunt principes coniuncti psallentibus, et cetera. Item: principes Iuda duces eorum, et cetera. Quod autem ad potestates pertineat reprimere, patet Rom. XIII, 3 s.: vis autem non timere potestatem? Bonum fac, et habebis laudem ex illa; Dei enim minister est tibi in bonum; si autem malefeceris, time. Non enim sine causa gladium portat, et cetera. Magni ergo sunt quibus innotescit: quia sanctis Angelis, per quos diriguntur, et defenduntur sancti. He discusses those to whom the manifold wisdom of God is revealed in that text (3:10) previously not mentioned: that it may be made known to the principalities and powers, from which its greatness is evident. And, since there are also princes and potentates on earth, he adds in heavenly places meaning in heaven, where we shall be. Note here that Principalities and Powers are two ranks which, by their very names, designate a preeminence in action. The rank of Powers is ordered to check any hindrances to salvation, while the rank of Principalities takes the lead and gives commands that [salvation] might be carried into effect properly. The regulative function of the Principality rank is evident from that text of Psalm 67 (26-28): “Princes went before joined with singers... The princes of Juda are their leaders.” The repressive function of the Powers is clear in Romans 13 (3-4): “Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? Do that which is good; and thou shalt have praise from the same. For he is God’s minister to thee, for good. But, if thou do that which is evil, fear; for he beareth not the sword in vain. For he is God’s minister; an avenger to execute wrath upon him that doth evil.” Hence, those to whom [the mystery] is made known are eminent; the holy angels by whom the saints are directed and protected. Per quid autem eis innotescat multiformis sapientia Dei subdit, dicens per Ecclesiam, quod quidem habet magnam difficultatem. Nam Glossa habet, id est per apostolos in Ecclesia praedicantes. Unus quidem intellectus esse potest, quod scilicet Angeli didicerunt ab apostolis, et hoc videtur quamdam rationem habere. Videmus enim quod in caelo inter Angelos superiores, qui immediate a Deo illuminantur, illuminant et docent inferiores Angelos, qui non immediate illuminantur a Deo. Non videtur ergo irrationabile dici quod doceant Angelos apostoli, qui immediate a Deo sunt edocti, secundum illud Io. I, 18: unigenitus filius qui est in sinu patris, ipse enarravit. The means through which the manifold wisdom of God is made known to them is designated by his saying through the church. This presents no small problem. For a Gloss has “That is, through the Apostles preaching in the Church.” This is one way it could be understood, the angels are taught by the Apostles, and this seems to have some grounds to it. For we notice that in heaven the higher angels, who are enlightened immediately by God, illumine and teach the lower angels who are not enlightened immediately by God. Therefore, it does not seem uneasonable that the Apostles should teach the angels since they were taught immediately by God according to John 1 (18): “The only begotten Son who is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.” Sed hoc quidem satis sufficienter dici posset, nisi aliud occurreret. Cum enim in Christo sint duae naturae, divina scilicet et humana, edocti quidem sunt apostoli a Christo immediate quantum ad humanam naturam, Angeli autem immediate naturam divinam vident, etiam inferiores, alias non essent beati, cum in sola visione divinae essentiae rationalis creaturae beatitudo consistat. However, another factor upsets the sufficiency of this [interpretation]. For there are two natures in Christ, the divine and the human. The Apostles were taught immediately by Christ in his human nature; but the angels immediately intuit the divine nature—even the lower angels, otherwise they would not be happy, since the beatitude of a rational creature can consist in the vision of the Divine Essence alone. Non est ergo conveniens, nec ratio aliqua, ut dicamus sanctos qui sunt in patria doceri a quantumcumque perfectis viatoribus. Nam licet inter natos mulierum non surrexit maior Ioanne Baptista, tamen qui minor est in regno caelorum maior est illo, ut dicitur Lc. VII, 28. Dicere autem quod Daemones doceantur ab hominibus, hoc absque praeiudicio credibile est. Sed quod beati qui immediate verbum conspiciunt, quod est speculum sine macula, in quo relucent omnia, a viatoribus doceantur, dici non debet, nec conveniens videtur. It certainly would be unseemly and absurd for us to maintain that the saints in the fatherland could be taught by even the most perfect of those still on their way [to heaven]. Although among men bom of women none greater than Jqhn the Baptist has arisen, yet “he that is the lesser in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he” (Lk. 7:28). To hold that the demons could be instructed by men is, at first glance, credible. But that the blessed could be educated by pilgrims when they immediately behold the Word, the spotless mirror reflecting all being, this should not be held and does not appear proper. Dicendum est ergo, quod innotuit Angelis per Ecclesiam, id est per apostolos praedicantes, ut dicit Glossa, non quod Angeli hoc didicerint ab eis, sed in eis. Nam, sicut dicit Augustinus super Genesim ad litteram, Deus antequam creaturas crearet, ante, dico, ordine naturae, non ordine temporis, cum secundum tempus simul omnia creata sint, rationes rerum naturalium indidit mentibus Angelorum, quo fit ut Angeli dupliciter res naturales cognoscerent, quia cognoverunt eas in verbo, et haec cognitio dicitur matutina. Item, cognoverunt eas in naturis propriis, et haec dicitur cognitio vespertina. Therefore, it must be asserted that the angels are instructed through the church, that is, through the apostolic preaching, as the Gloss maintains, in such a way that they are not taught by the Apostles, but in them. Augustine remarks, in his Super Genesim ad Litteram, that before God created [material] beings, he impressed on the angelic minds the intelligible patterns of natural realities. The “before” designating the order of nature and not of time, since from the standpoint of time everything was created together. As a result, angels know natural things in two ways. They know them in the Word, and this is termed their morning knowledge; and they know them in their own proper natures, this is referred to as their evening knowledge. Ulterius notandum est, quod sunt quaedam rationes mysteriorum gratiae totam creaturam excedentes, et huiusmodi rationes non sunt inditae mentibus Angelorum, sed in solo Deo sunt occultae. Et ideo Angeli non cognoscunt eas in seipsis, nec etiam in Deo, sed cognoscunt eas secundum quod in effectibus explicantur. Cum igitur rationes pertinentes ad multiformem sapientiam Dei, sint huiusmodi, scilicet in solo Deo absconditae, et postmodum in istis forinsecis effectibus explicatae, manifestum est, quod Angeli eas, nec in seipsis, nec in ipso verbo, nec etiam ab apostolis, nec a viatoribus aliis cognoverunt; sed in ipsis apostolis explicatas, prius in mente divina latentes, cognoverunt. Sicut domus quae est in mente artificis, vel conceptu de domo facienda, nullus scire potest quamdiu latet in mente, nisi solum ille qui solus illabitur animabus, scilicet Deus; sed postquam conceptus est iam in effectu extrinseco explicatus, quia domus iam facta est; sic aliquis de domo iam facta, quae prius latebat in mente artificis, edocetur, non autem edocetur per domum, sed in domo. Further, there exist certain intelligible patterns [operative in] the mysteries of grace which transcend the whole of creation. These intelligible patterns are not impressed on the angelic minds but are bidden in God alone. Thus the angels do not grasp them in themselves, nor even in God, but only as they unfold in the events [which the mysteries] effect. Now, the intelligible patterns relative to God’s manifold wisdom belong to this category. They are hidden in God and gradually unfold in external effects. Clearly, therefore, the angels will understand them neither in themselves, nor in the Word, nor by the Apostles or any other wayfarer. Rather, they know [the mysteries of grace] hidden in the Divine Mind as they unfold in the Apostles themselves. This is like the case of a house, or the concept of a house to be built, in the mind of an architect. As long as it remains in his mind it can be known to no one—except God who alone penetrates into human souls. However, once the concepts are realized externally in the construction, in the house after it is built, anyone can learn from the building what previously was concealed in the architect’s mind. Yet, they are not taught by the house but in the house. Unde iam restat ut aliter exponatur hoc quod dicit ut innotescat principatibus, etc., ut illa coniunctio ut accipiatur non causaliter, sed quodammodo consecutive, et legatur sic: illuminare quae sit dispensatio sacramenti absconditi a saeculis in Deo, qui omnia creavit, ita tamen absconditi, ut innotescat principatibus, etc., id est, istud sacramentum ita fuit absconditum in Deo, quod inde innotuit principatibus et potestatibus non ab aeterno, sed a saeculo, quia omnis creatura principium habet; et hoc, non per Ecclesiam terrenam, sed caelestem, quia ibi est vera Ecclesia, quae est mater nostra et ad quam tendimus et a qua nostra Ecclesia militans est exemplata. Et sic ly per, designat ordinem naturae tantum, ut dicatur per Ecclesiam caelestem, id est, de uno in aliud, sicut dicitur: illud factum est notum per totum regnum vel civitatem, quia nova currunt ab uno in alium, secundum quod verba currunt; sicut dicitur Act. c. IX, 42 de suscitatione Thabitae beghinae sancti Petri: notum autem factum est per universam Ioppen, et crediderunt multi, et cetera. There is still another interpretation of that it may be made known to the principalities and powers in which the conjunction that is not taken causally, but in a certain way, consecutively. Thus it would read: To make known what is the dispensation of the mystery hidden for ages in God who has created all reality; hidden, nonetheless, in such a way that it was made known to Principalities and Powers. The sacrament was concealed in God in such a manner that he later revealed it to the Principalities and Powers, not from eternity but from the time they began to exist, for every creature has a beginning. This was not through the earthly Church but through the heavenly one—the true Church who is our mother and to whom we tend; on her is our militant Church patterned. Thus the through signifies only a natural sequence, [the, mysteries] are made known “through the heavenly Church” in the sense that it is passed on from one to another. As when it is said: That fact is known throughout [per] a whole realm or city because the news travelled from one person to another in their conversations. Acts 9 (42) uses this figure of speaking in reference to St. Peter’s raising of Tabitha: “And it was made known throughout all Joppe; and many believed in the Lord.” Magister tamen, aliter recitat lecturam Augustini, hoc modo illuminare quae sit dispensatio, etc., et hoc per Ecclesiam, id est, omnes qui sunt in Ecclesia terrena, sed hoc non est secundum intentionem Augustini. Hic posset quaeri, utrum Angeli a principio mundi cognoverint mysterium incarnationis. Respondet Magister dicens, quod Angelis maioribus notum fuit, sed non minoribus. Unde ipsi, scilicet Angeli minores, interrogant, Is. LXIII, 1: quis est iste qui venit de Edom tinctis vestibus de Bosra? Sed opinio haec est contra beatum Dionysium. Dionysius enim duas interrogationes Angelorum de Christo factas ex sacra Scriptura accipit. Unam ex Ps. XXIII, 8: quis est iste rex gloriae? Item accipit aliam ex Is. LXIII, v. 1: quis est iste, qui venit de Edom? et cetera. Prima autem interrogatio, secundum eum, est inferiorum Angelorum, secunda supremorum; quod patet, quia primae non Deus respondet, sed alius, unde dicit: dominus virtutum ipse est rex gloriae. Secundae vero respondet ipse Deus immediate, unde dicit: ego qui loquor iustitiam, et propugnator sum ad salvandum. Vult ergo Dionysius, quod utrique aliquid ignoraverunt et aliquid sciverunt: quia a principio omnes sciverunt mysterium incarnationis in generali, sed rationes in speciali didicerunt tempore procedente seu processu temporis, secundum quod in effectibus extrinsecis explicabantur. On the other band, the Teacher comments on the text of Augustine in such a way that “to enlighten all men, that they may see what is the dispensation of the mystery which hath been hidden from eternity in God” (Eph. 3:9) occurs through the Church, that is, to all men who are in the earthly Church. But this is not in accord with Augustine’s thought. Here it could be asked whether the angels knew of the mystery of the Incarnation from the beginning of the world. The Teacher replies that it was known to the higher angels but not the lower ones. So the lower angels ask: “Who is this that cometh from Edom, with dyed garments from Bosra?” (Is. 63:1). This opinion contradicts that of Blessed Dionysius who sees in the Holy Scriptures two questions asked by the angels about Christ. The first is from Psalm 23 (8): “Who is this King of Glory?” and the other is from Isaias 63 (1): Who is this that cometh from Edom?” According to Dionysius, the first is asked by the lower angels and the second by the higher. He bases this on the fact that God does not reply to the first, but someone else says: “The Lord of hosts, he is the King of Glory” (Ps. 23:10). Whereas the second is answered by God immediately: I, that speak justice and am a defender to save” (Is. 63:1). Hence, Dionysius prefers to say that both were ignorant of some [aspects of the mystery] and knew others. From the beginning all knew the mystery of the Incarnation in a general fashion, but as time passedor in the temporal process—they learned its detailed intelligible patterns when they were explicated in external events.
13 διὸ αἰτοῦμαι μὴ ἐγκακεῖν ἐν ταῖς θλίψεσίν μου ὑπὲρ ὑμῶν, ἥτις ἐστὶν δόξα ὑμῶν. 14 τούτου χάριν κάμπτω τὰ γόνατά μου πρὸς τὸν πατέρα, 15 ἐξ οὗ πᾶσα πατριὰ ἐν οὐρανοῖς καὶ ἐπὶ γῆς ὀνομάζεται, 16 ἵνα δῷ ὑμῖν κατὰ τὸ πλοῦτος τῆς δόξης αὐτοῦ δυνάμει κραταιωθῆναι διὰ τοῦ πνεύματος αὐτοῦ εἰς τὸν ἔσω ἄνθρωπον, 17 κατοικῆσαι τὸν Χριστὸν διὰ τῆς πίστεως ἐν ταῖς καρδίαις ὑμῶν, ἐν ἀγάπῃ ἐρριζωμένοι καὶ τεθεμελιωμένοι, 13 Wherefore I pray you not to faint at my tribulations for you, which is your glory. 14 For this cause I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15 Of whom all paternity in heaven and earth is named; 16 That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened by his Spirit with might unto the inward man; 17 That Christ may dwell by faith in your hearts; that, being rooted and founded in charity. Postquam egit apostolus de dignitate officii, quod pertinet ad suam conditionem, hic consequenter agit de his quae pertinent ad suam afflictionem, scilicet de passionibus suis. Circa quod duo facit. After the Apostle has dealt with the dignity of the office belonging to his position (3:3), he goes on to speak of his tribulations and sufferings. In reference to this he does two things:
Primo exhortatur eos ne pro suis tribulationibus conturbentur sed habeant patientiam;
secundo, quia ad hoc quod homo non conturbetur necessarium est divinum auxilium, praemittit orationem, ut impleant hoc per divinam gratiam, ibi huius rei gratia, et cetera.
First, he exhorts them lest they be troubled by his sufferings; they should have patience.
Secondly, since divine assistance is necessary if man is not to become agitated, he prays that they might accomplish this through divine grace (3:14).
Dicit ergo primo: ex magnitudine officii mei et firmitate eius, quam habeo per fidem Christi, accidit quod tribulationes patior; nec me conturbant, nec a Christo avellere possunt. Rom. VIII, 35: quis nos separabit a charitate Christi? Tribulatio? etc.; quasi dicat: nihil. Propter quod induco vos et peto, ne deficiatis in tribulationibus meis, ne scilicet occasione tribulationum mearum deficiatis omnino a fide et ab operibus bonis. Hebr. XII, 3: non fatigemini animis vestris deficientes. About the first he says: Due to the importance and security of my office, which I have through faith in Christ, it happens that I suffer tribulations; but they neither daunt me nor can they tear me away from Christ. “Who then shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation? Or distress? Or famine? Or nakedness? Or danger? Or persecution? Or the sword?” (Rom. 8:35). As though he affirmed that nothing can. Wherefore I urge and pray you not to faint at my tribulations. My sufferings should not be an occasion for you to fail in faith or in good works at all. “Think diligently upon him [Jesus] that endureth such opposition from sinners against himself; that you be not wearied, fainting in your minds” (Heb. 12:3). Dico autem quod vos non debetis deficere, quia sunt pro vobis, id est, pro utilitate vestra. II Cor. I, 6: sive tribulamur pro vestra exhortatione et salute, sive consolamur pro vestra consolatione, sive exhortamur pro vestra exhortatione et salute, quae operatur tolerantiam passionum earumdem, quas et nos patimur, ut spes nostra firma sit pro vobis, scientes quoniam sicut socii passionum estis, sic eritis et consolationum. Vel dicit pro vobis, id est pro vestra probatione. Sap. III, v. 6: tamquam aurum in fornace probavit electos dominus, et cetera. I declare that you must not be disheartened, they are for you, for your own utility. “Whether we be in tribulation, it is for your exhortation and salvation; or whether we be comforted, it is for your consolation; or whether we be exhorted, it is for your exhortation and salvation, which worketh the enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer, that our hope for you may be steadfast, knowing that as you are partakers of the sufferings, so shall you be also of the consolation” (2 Cor. 1:6-7). Or, he says for you meaning, for your testing: “As gold in the furnace he hath proved them, and as a victim of a holocaust he hath received them” (Wis. 3:6). Quae est gloria vestra, etc., scilicet si non deficiatis, sed stetis fortes in tribulationibus. Nam qui perseveraverit usque in finem, et cetera. Alio modo: quae est gloria vestra, id est tolerantia passionum nostrarum, est pro vobis ad gloriam, in hoc quod Deus exposuit apostolos suos et prophetas tribulationibus et passionibus propter salutem vestram. Os. c. VI, 5: propterea dolavi in prophetis, et occidi eos, et cetera. II Cor. I, 14: gloria vestra sumus, sicut vos nostra, et cetera. Which is your glory if you do not fall but remain steadfast in sufferings, for “He that shall persevere unto the end, he shall be saved” (Mt. 10:22). In a different way, which is your glory, that is, the endurance of our trials is to your own glory in that God exposes his Apostles and prophets to sorrows and pains on account of your salvation. “For this reason have I hewed them in the prophets, I have slain them by the words of my mouth” (Os. 6:5). “We are your glory, as you also are ours, in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Cor. 1:14). Consequenter cum dicit huius rei gratia, etc., implorat eis auxilium per orationem, ut per exhortationem suam proficiant. As a consequence he goes on (v. 14) to implore assistance for them through a prayer that they might derive advantage from his exhortation.
Et primo orationem praemittit;
secundo quasi securus de exauditione, gratias agit, ibi ei autem qui potens est, et cetera.
First, he sets down the prayer.
Secondly, confident of its being heard, he adds a thanksgiving (3:20).
Item, prima in tres, The first part has three sections:
quia primo proponit orationis obiectum;
secundo orationis intentum, ibi ut det vobis secundum divitias, etc.;
tertio orationis fructum, ibi ut possitis comprehendere, et cetera.
First, he mentions to whom the prayer is addressed.
Secondly, the intention of the prayer (3:16).
Thirdly, the prayer’s fruit (3:18).
Oratio autem redditur exaudibilis per humilitatem. Ps. ci, 18: respexit in orationem humilium, et cetera. Eccli. XXXV, 21: oratio humiliantis se, nubes penetrabit, et cetera. Et ideo statim orationem suam ab humilitate incipit, dicens huius rei gratia, scilicet ne deficiatis a fide, flecto genua mea ad patrem, etc., quod est signum humilitatis propter duo. Primo quia qui genua flectit, quodam modo parvificat se, et subiicit se ei, cui genua flectit: unde per huiusmodi ostenditur recognitio propriae fragilitatis et parvitatis.
secundo quia in genu est fortitudo corporis. Quando ergo quis genua flectit, protestatur debilitatem suae virtutis. Et inde est, quod exteriora signa corporalia exhibentur Deo ad conversionem, et exercitium spirituale animae interioris. In oratione Manasses: flecto genua cordis mei, et cetera. Is. XLV, 23: mihi curvabitur omne genu, et cetera.
Humility makes a prayer worthy of being heard: “He hath had regard to the prayer of the humble: and he hath not despised their petition” (Ps. 101:18). And, “The prayer of him that humbleth himself shall pierce the clouds: and till it come nigh he will not be comforted.” (Ecclus. 35:21). Therefore, he immediately starts his prayer in humility, saying For this cause that you fail not in the faith I bow my knees to the Father. This is a symbol of humility for two reasons. First, a man belittles himself, in a certain way, when he genuflects, and he subjects himself to the one he genuflects before. In such a way he recognizes his own weakness and insignificance. Secondly, physical strength is present in the knees; in bending them a man confesses openly to his lack of strength. Thus external, physical symbols are shown to God for the purpose of renewing and spiritually training the inner soul. [This is expressed] in the prayer of Manasse: I bend the knee of by heart...” “For every knee shall be bowed to me: and every tongue shall swear” (Is. 45:24). Deinde describit orationis obiectum, quod est Deus, et describit eum ex duobus: primo ex affinitate, secundo ex auctoritate. Ex affinitate enim erigimur ad orandum cum fiducia. Et quantum ad hoc dicit ad patrem domini nostri Iesu Christi, scilicet cuius nos filii sumus. Iac. I, 17: omne datum optimum, et cetera. Is. LXIII, 16: tu enim, domine, pater noster, et cetera. Ex auctoritate autem confirmatur obtinendi quod petimus fiducia, quia ipse est ex quo omnis paternitas in caelo et in terra nominatur. Hic posset quaeri utrum in caelo sit paternitas. He describes next the person to whom the prayer is directed, God, whom he portrays in his nearness and in his authority. For from his relationship to us we are encouraged to pray with confidence. In this regard he states to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ and whose children we are also. “Every best gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights” (Jas. 1:17). “Thou, O Lord, are our Father, our Redeemer: from everlasting is thy name” (Is. 63:16). We are confirmed in the hope of obtaining what we ask for with confidence by his authority since from him all paternity in heaven and earth is named. Posset dici breviter, quod in caelo, id est in Deo vel in divinis, est paternitas, quae est principium omnis paternitatis. Sed de hac non quaeritur ad praesens, quia cuilibet fideli nota est. Sed quaeritur utrum in caelis, id est utrum in Angelis sit aliqua paternitas. At this point the question arises if there is any paternity in heaven. A quick answer would be that in heaven means that paternity is present in God and in Divinity, and that this is the source of all fatherhood. But this is not questioned here, it is known to all the faithful. It is asked whether in heaven, that is, in the angels, there is any paternity. Ad hoc dico quod paternitas est tantum in viventibus et cognoscentibus. Est autem duplex vita. Una secundum actum, alia secundum potentiam. Vita quidem secundum potentiam, est habere opera vitae in potentia. Unde dormiens quantum ad actus exteriores, dicitur vivere in potentia. Vivere autem secundum actum est, quando exercet quis opera vitae in actu. Sic autem non solum qui dat potentiam vitae, pater est eius cui dat; sed qui dat actum vitae, ille etiam pater dici potest. Quicumque ergo inducit aliquem ad aliquem actum vitae, puta ad bene operandum, intelligendum, volendum, amandum, pater eius dici potest. I Cor. IV, 15: nam si decem millia paedagogorum habeatis in Christo, sed non multos patres, et cetera. Cum ergo inter Angelos unus alterum illuminet, perficiat et purget, et isti sint actus hierarchici, manifestum est quod unus Angelus est pater alterius, sicut magister est pater discipuli. To this I reply that paternity exists only among beings who live and who know. But life is twofold: it is either actual or potential. To possess the vital activities in potency is to be potentially alive; for example, a person who is sleeping is said to be potentially alive in regard to the external actions [he performs when awake]. But when someone actually performs the vital activities, he is alive in act. Thus, not only he who transmits the potency to life is the father of him to whom he gives it, but also he who communicates an act of life can be called a father. Therefore, whoever stimulates another to some vital act, whether it be to good activity, to understanding, to willing or loving, can be given the name of father. “For if you have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet not many fathers” (1 Cor. 4:15). Likewise, in the hierarchical acts by which one angel illumines, perfects, and purifies another, it is evident that that angel is the father of the other—just as a teacher is the father of his disciples. Utrum autem paternitas, quae est in caelis et in terra, derivetur a paternitate, quae est in divinis, dubitatur. Et videtur quod non; quia nomina sic imponimus secundum quod res nominatas cognoscimus; quidquid autem cognoscimus, est per creaturas, ergo nomina imposita a nobis rebus ipsis, plus et prius conveniunt creaturis quam ipsi Deo. Some doubt that the fatherhood in heaven and on earth is derived from the paternity which exists in the Divinity. It seems not to be, for we give names in accordance with our knowledge of the reality named. And whatever we do know is through creatures; hence, the names we give to the things themselves are applicable primarily, and to a greater degree, to creatures rather than God. Respondeo et dico quod nomen alicuius rei nominatae a nobis dupliciter potest accipi, quia vel est expressivum, aut significativum conceptus intellectus, quia voces sunt notae, vel signa passionum, vel conceptuum qui sunt in anima, et sic nomen prius est in creaturis, quam in Deo. Aut inquantum est manifestativum quidditatis rei nominatae exterius, et sic est prius in Deo. Unde hoc nomen paternitas, secundum quod significat conceptionem intellectus nominantis rem, sic per prius invenitur in creaturis quam in Deo, quia per prius creatura innotescit nobis, quam Deus; secundum autem quod significat ipsam rem nominatam, sic per prius est in Deo quam in nobis, quia certe omnis virtus generativa in nobis est a Deo. Et ideo dicit: ex quo omnis paternitas in caelo et in terra nominatur, quasi dicat: paternitas quae est in ipsis creaturis, est quasi nominalis seu vocalis, sed illa paternitas divina, qua pater dat totam naturam filio, absque omni imperfectione, est vera paternitas. I reply and state that the name of anything we name can be taken in two ways. In one it is expressive or symbolic of an intellectual concept, since words are the marks or signs of the impressions or concepts that are in the soul. In this perspective a name refers to creatures more than to God. However, in the second [the name] discloses the quiddity of the external object which is named; thus it will refer more to God. Therefore, the word paternity, when it signifies a concept formed by our intellect as it is naming a thing, will primarily be applicable to creatures instead of God since creatures are more known to us than God. But when it signifies the reality itself which has been named, then [this reality] is primarily in God rather than in us. For certainly all the power to procreate present in us is from God. So he says of whom all paternity in heaven and earth is named as though to affirm: The fatherhood present in creatures is, as it were, nominal or vocal; but the divine fatherhood by which the Father communicates his whole nature to the Son without any imperfection, this is true paternity. Consequenter cum dicit ut det vobis, etc., ostendit orationis intentum. Next (v. 16), he discloses what he prays for:
Et primo facit hoc;
secundo ostendit per quid posset impetrare suum propositum, ibi per spiritum eius, et cetera.
First, he does this.
Secondly, he shows through whom he can ask for what he desires (3:16b).
Dicit ergo: dico quod peto ne deficiatis, sed stetis viriliter. Scio tamen quod hoc ex vobis facere non potestis sine dono Dei, ideo peto, ut det vobis. Iac. I, 17: omne datum optimum, et cetera. Et hoc quidem secundum divitias gloriae suae, id est secundum copiam maiestatis eius et magnificentiae. Ps. CXI, 3: gloria et divitiae in domo eius. Prov. VIII, 18: mecum sunt divitiae et gloria. Divitiae, inquam, quae faciunt virtute corroborari. Is. XL, 29: qui dat lasso virtutem, et his qui non sunt fortitudinem et robur multiplicat. Et hoc in interiori homine, quia nisi in interioribus fortificetur homo, faciliter ab hoste superatur. Is. IX, 7: confirmet illud et corroboret in iudicio et iustitia, amodo et usque in sempiternum. Thus he says: I ask that you do not give up, but be steadfast like men. Yet I know that by yourselves you cannot achieve this without God’s gift, so I beg that he would grant it to you since “every best gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights” (Jas. 1:17). He will do this according to the riches of his glory, that is, in accord with his overflowing majesty and grandeur. “Glory and riches are in his house” (Ps. 111:3), and “With me are riches and glory” (Prov. 8:18). Riches, I say, which will cause you to be strengthened with might. “It is he that giveth strength to the weary, and increaseth force and might to them that are not” (Is. 40:29). This is for the inward man because a man is overcome easily by his enemy if be is not inwardly fortified. [God must] “establish him and strengthen him with judgment and with justice, from henceforth and forever” (Is. 9:7). Tunc resumatur illa particula interposita, scilicet per spiritum, in qua ostendit per quid obtinere potest quod petit. Ipse enim spiritus, qui roborat, est spiritus fortitudinis et est causa non deficiendi in tribulationibus, quem obtinemus per fidem quae est fortissima: quia fides est substantia rerum sperandarum, id est facit in nobis subsistere res sperandas. Unde I Petr. V, 9: cui resistite fortes in fide. Et ideo subiungit habitare Christum per fidem, et hoc in cordibus vestris. I Petr. III, 15: dominum autem Christum sanctificate in cordibus vestris. Inserted in the above is the phrase by his Spirit indicating through whom petitions are granted. The Spirit himself fortifies, he is the Spirit of fortitude, and is the source of our not yielding under sufferings. We receive him through a faith which is most strong because it is the substance of the realities we hope for—that is, it makes these desired realities exist within us. Whence I Peter 5 (9) [concerning the devil]: “Whom resist ye, strong in faith.” And Paul adds that Christ may dwell by faith in your hearts. “Sanctify the Lord Christ in, your hearts” (1 Pet. 3:15). Per quod? Dico quod non solum per fidem, quae, ut donum est fortissima, sed etiam per charitatem quae est in sanctis. Et ideo subdit in charitate radicati et fundati. I Cor. XIII, 7: omnia suffert, omnia credit, omnia sperat, omnia sustinet, charitas numquam excidit. Cant. ult.: fortis est ut mors dilectio. Unde sicut arbor sine radice, et domus sine fundamento de facili ruit, ita spirituale aedificium, nisi sit in charitate fundatum et radicatum, durare non potest. With what? I claim that it should not only be through faith, which as a gift is the strongest, but also through the charity that is in the saints. That you may be rooted and founded in a charity which “beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. Charity never falleth away” (1 Cor. 13:7-8). “For love is strong as death...” (Cant. 8:6). A tree without roots, or a house lacking a foundation are destroyed easily. In a similar manner, a spiritual edifice not rooted and founded in charity cannot last.
18 ἵνα ἐξισχύσητε καταλαβέσθαι σὺν πᾶσιν τοῖς ἁγίοις τί τὸ πλάτος καὶ μῆκος καὶ ὕψος καὶ βάθος, 19 γνῶναί τε τὴν ὑπερβάλλουσαν τῆς γνώσεως ἀγάπην τοῦ Χριστοῦ, ἵνα πληρωθῆτε εἰς πᾶν τὸ πλήρωμα τοῦ θεοῦ. 20 τῷ δὲ δυναμένῳ ὑπὲρ πάντα ποιῆσαι ὑπερεκπερισσοῦ ὧν αἰτούμεθα ἢ νοοῦμεν κατὰ τὴν δύναμιν τὴν ἐνεργουμένην ἐν ἡμῖν, 21 αὐτῷ ἡ δόξα ἐν τῇ ἐκκλησίᾳ καὶ ἐν Χριστῷ Ἰησοῦ εἰς πάσας τὰς γενεὰς τοῦ αἰῶνος τῶν αἰώνων: ἀμήν. 18 You may be able to comprehend, with all the saints, what is the breadth and length and height and depth; 19 To know also the charity of Christ, which surpasseth all knowledge; that you may be filled into all the fulness of God. 20 Now to him who is able to do all things more abundantly than we desire or understand, according to the power that worketh in us; 21 To him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus, unto all the generations of the age of ages, Amen. Supra ostendit apostolus petitionis suae pro Ephesiis, et orationis intentum, scilicet corroborationem spiritus in fide et charitate, hic consequenter ostendit eius quam petiit corroborationis per fidem et charitatem fructum, qui est quaedam cognitio. Previously the Apostle revealed the object of his petition or prayer in behalf of the Ephesians, a strengthening of spirit in faith and charity (3:14). Consequently, he here shows the fruit of this strengthening through faith and charity; it is a certain type of knowledge. He sets forth:
Ideo primo proponit ipsam notitiam;
secundo ipsius notitiae et cognitionis efficaciam, ibi ut impleamini in omnem plenitudinem Dei.
First, the knowledge itself.
Secondly, the effective power of this awareness or knowledge (3:19b).
Dicit ergo: ita sitis, charissimi, in charitate radicati et fundati, ut possitis comprehendere, et cetera. Quod quidem dupliciter legi potest. Primo modo, ut magis sequamur intentionem apostoli. He says: You ought to be so rooted and founded in charity, dearly beloved, that you may be able to comprehend, with all the saints, what is the breadth and length and height and depth. This can be read in two ways. In the first way we are more in accord with the Apostle’s thought. Sciendum est ergo quod tam in futuro quam in praesenti cognitio Dei est nobis necessaria; nam in futuro gaudebimus et de cognitione Dei et de cognitione assumptae humanitatis. Io. XVII, 3: haec est vita aeterna, ut, cognoscant, et cetera. Io. X, 9: ingredietur, scilicet in contemplatione divinitatis, et egredietur, scilicet in contemplatione humanitatis, et pascua inveniet. Et quia fides est inchoatio illius futurae cognitionis, quia est substantia rerum sperandarum, etc., ut dicitur Hebr. XI, v. 1 quasi iam in nobis res sperandas per modum cuiusdam inchoationis facit subsistere. Inde est quod fides nostra in his duobus consistit, scilicet in divinitate et humanitate Christi. I Cor. II, 2: non enim iudicavi me scire aliquid inter vos, nisi Iesum Christum, et cetera. Secundum hoc ergo The knowledge of God is necessary for us both in the future life and in the present. For in the future we shall rejoice in our knowledge of God and in our perception of the humanity [the Son] assumed. “Now this is eternal life: that they may know thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent” (Jn. 17:3). [Our Lord compared himself to a door; men will] “go in” to contemplate the divinity, and will “go out” in the contemplation of the humanity, “and shall find pastures” (Jn. 10:9). Faith inaugurates that future knowledge; it is “the substance of things hoped for” (Heb. 11:1), already making the realities we desire exist within us in an inchoate manner. For this reason our faith consists in the divinity and humanity of Christ. “For I judged not myself to know anything among you, but Jesus Christ; and him crucified” (1 Cor. 2:2). In accord with this he discusses:
primo praemittit eis cognitionem divinitatis;
secundo cognitionem mysteriorum humanitatis, ibi scire etiam supereminentem scientiae, et cetera.
First, the knowledge of divinity.
Secondly, the knowledge of the mysteries of the humanity (3: 19).
Cognitionem autem divinitatis manifestat eis sub his verbis ut possitis, etc., quasi dicat: corroboramini per fidem et charitatem, quia si sic estis, pervenietis ad vitam aeternam, ubi habebitis Deum praesentem et perfecte eum cognoscetis. Quod autem Deus manifestetur amanti, patet Io. XIV, 21: qui diligit me, diligetur a patre meo, et ego diligam eum, et manifestabo ei meipsum; quod vero manifestetur credenti, patet, prout dicitur Is. VII, 9, secundum aliam litteram: nisi credideritis, non intelligetis. Oportet enim ut secundum fidem et charitatem corroboremini, ut possitis comprehendere. He reveals the knowledge of the divinity to them with the words: that you may be able to comprehend, with all the saints... As though he said: Be strong in faith and charity for if you are, you will gain life eternal where you will enjoy God’s presence and perfectly know him. It is evident from John 14 (21) that God reveals himself to one who loves: “He that loveth me shall be loved of my Father; and I will love him and will manifest myself to him.” It is also clear that he shows himself to one who believes, as a variant reading of Isaias 7 (9) puts it: “Unless you believe, you will not understand. You must be fortified by faith and charity in order that you might be able to comprehend. Ubi sciendum est quod comprehendere quandoque ponitur pro includere, et tunc oportet quod comprehendens contineat in se totaliter comprehensum. Quandoque autem ponitur pro apprehendere, et tunc dicit remotionem distantiae et insinuat propinquitatem. Primo autem modo a nullo intellectu creato Deus comprehendi potest. Iob XI, 7: forsitan vestigia Dei comprehendes, et usque ad perfectum omnipotentem reperies? Quasi dicat: non, quia sic posset eum perfecte cognoscere quantum cognoscibilis est. Et de hac cognitione non intelligitur quod dicitur ut possitis comprehendere, sed
secundo modo. Et est una de tribus dotibus, et de hac loquitur apostolus, cum dicit ut possitis comprehendere, id est Deum habere praesentem et praesentialiter cognoscere. Phil. c. III, 12: sequor autem si quomodo comprehendam, in quo, et cetera. Et haec comprehensio est communis omnibus sanctis eius. Ideo subdit cum omnibus sanctis. Ps. CXLIX, 9: gloria haec est omnibus sanctis eius. Talibus autem dicitur illud I Cor. IX, 24: sic currite ut comprehendatis, et cetera. Quae sit latitudo, et cetera.
It should be noted that sometimes to comprehend means “to enclose,” and then it is necessary that the comprehending totally contains within itself what is comprehended. At other times it means “to apprehend,” and then it affirms a remoteness or distance and yet implies proximity. No created intellect can comprehend God in the first manner. “Peradventure thou wilt comprehend the steps of God, and wilt find out the Almighty perfectly?” (Job 11:7). The answer implied is, No. For one could know him perfectly to the extent that [one knew all] that could be known about him. And this type of knowledge is not referred to in that you may comprehend, but rather the second kind. This latter is one of the three dowries, and it is of it that the Apostle speaks here when he says that you may comprehend, meaning, that you may enjoy the presence of God and know him intimately. “Not as though I had already attained, or were already perfect; but I follow after, if I may by any means apprehend [comprehendam], wherein I am also apprehended by Christ Jesus” (Phil. 3:12). Such comprehension is common to all his saints; so he adds with all the saints. “This glory is to all his saints” (Ps. 149:9). “So run that you may apprehend [comprehendatis]” (1 Cor. 9:24). Notandum quod verba ista videntur ortum habere ex verbis Iob XI, 7: forsan, inquit, vestigia Dei comprehendes? Quasi dicat: incomprehensibilis est; huius autem incomprehensibilitatis causam assignat, dicens: excelsior caelo est, et quid facies? Profundior Inferno est, et unde cognosces? Longior terra mensura eius, et latior mari. Ex quo videtur quod Iob ostendat eum esse comprehensibilem, attribuens ei quadruplicem differentiam dimensionum. His enim verbis alludens apostolus dicit ut possitis comprehendere, quae sit latitudo, etc.; quasi dicat: habeatis tantam fidem et charitatem, ut possitis tandem comprehendere quod comprehensibile est. Et hoc modo exponit Dionysius. Note that the words what is the breadth and length and height and depth seem to owe their origin to the passage in Job 11 (7-9). “Peradventure,” he says, “thou wilt comprehend the steps of God?” As if he stated that God is incomprehensible. Then he gives the reason for this incomprehensibility by saying: “He is higher than the heaven, and what wilt thou do? He is deeper than hell, and how wilt thou know? The measure of him is longer than the earth, and broader than the sea.” Yet from this it appears that Job, in attributing the four different dimensions to him, shows that he is comprehensible. Alluding to these words the Apostle asserts that you may be able to comprehend what is the breadth and length and height and depth; as though he said: May you possess sufficient faith and charity that you might comprehend him to the extent that he is able to be comprehended. Dionysius explains the text in this way. Non est tamen aliquo modo intelligendum has dimensiones corporaliter esse in Deo, quia spiritus est Deus, ut dicitur Io. IV, 24. Sunt tamen in Deo metaphorice. Unde per latitudinem designatur dimensio seu extensio virtutis, et sapientiae divinae super omnia. Eccli. I, 10: effudit illam, scilicet sapientiam, super omnia opera sua. Per longitudinem designatur aeterna eius duratio. Ps. ci, 13: tu autem, domine, in aeternum permanes, et cetera. Ps. XCII, 5: domum tuam, domine, decet sanctitudo in longitudinem dierum. Per sublimitatem vel celsitudinem vero, perfectio et nobilitas naturae eius, quae in infinitum excedit creaturam. Ps. CXII, 4: excelsus super omnes gentes dominus. Et profundum, id est incomprehensibilitas sapientiae eius. Eccle. VII, 25: alta profunditas, scilicet sapientiae divinae, quis inveniet eam? Sic ergo patet quod finis fidei et charitatis nostrae est ut perveniamus ad perfectam fidei cognitionem, qua cognoscamus infinitam suae virtutis extensionem, aeternam et infinitam eius durationem, suae perfectissimae naturae celsitudinem, suae sapientiae profunditatem et incomprehensibilitatem, eo modo sicut est attingendum. Under no pretext should these dimensions be conceived as physically applicable to God, “God is spirit” (Jn. 4:24). They are in God metaphorically. Breadth designates the dimension or extension of his power and divine wisdom over all being. “And he poured her out,” namely wisdom, “upon all his works” (Ecclus. 1:10). By length his eternal duration is signified: “But thou, O Lord, endurest forever” (Ps. 101:13), and “holiness becometh thy house, O Lord, unto length of days” (Ps. 92:5). Height or loftiness denotes the perfection and nobility of his nature which infinitely exceeds all creation: “The Lord is high above all nations: and his glory above the heavens” (Ps. 112:4). In depth the incomprehensibility of his wisdom is intimated: “It is a great depth,” this divine wisdom, “who shall find it out?” (Eccl. 7:25). Clearly, therefore, the fulfillment of our faith and charity is to arrive at a perfect knowledge of the faith, by it we shall know, to the degree we can attain to it, the infinite extent of his power, the unbounded eternity of his duration, the loftiness of his most perfect nature, and the incomprehensibility and depth of his wisdom. Consequenter, quia adhuc alia cognitio est necessaria, scilicet cognitio mysteriorum humanitatis, ideo subdit scire etiam supereminentem scientiae, et cetera. Ubi sciendum est quod quidquid est in mysterio redemptionis humanae et incarnationis Christi, totum est opus charitatis. Nam quod incarnatum est, ex charitate processit. Supra II, 4: propter nimiam charitatem suam qua dilexit nos, et cetera. Quia vero mortuus fuit, ex charitate processit Io. XV, 13: maiorem hac dilectionem nemo habet, etc.; infra V, 2: Christus dilexit nos, et tradidit semetipsum pro nobis oblationem et hostiam Deo. Propter hoc dicit Gregorius: o inaestimabilis dilectio charitatis. Ut servum redimeres, filium tradidisti. Et ideo scire charitatem Christi, est scire omnia mysteria incarnationis Christi et redemptionis nostrae, quae ex immensa charitate Dei processerunt, quae quidem charitas excedit omnem intellectum creatum et omnium scientiam, cum sit incomprehensibilis cogitatu. Et ideo dicit supereminentem scientiae, scilicet naturali et omnem intellectum creatum excedentem, Phil. IV, 7: et pax Dei, quae exsuperat omnem sensum; charitatem Christi, id est, quam Deus pater fecit per Christum. II Cor. V, 19: Deus erat in Christo mundum reconcilians sibi. Next, since further knowledge is also necessary—a knowledge of the mysteries of the humanity—he goes on to know also the charity of Christ. For whatever occurred in the mystery of human redemption and Christ’s incarnation was the work of love. He was born out of charity: “For his exceeding charity wherewith he loved us even when we were dead in sins, bath quickened us together in Christ” (Eph. 2:4-5). That he died also sprang from charity: “Greater love than this no man bath, that a man lay down his life for his friends” (Jn. 15:13). And “Christ also bath loved us and bath delivered hftnself for us, an oblation and a sacrifice to God” (Eph. 5:2). On this account St. Gregory exclaimed: “O the incalculable love of your charity! To redeem slaves you delivered up your Son.” It follows that to know Christ’s love is to know all the mysteries of Christ’s Incarnation and our Redemption. These have poured out from the immense charity of God; a charity exceeding every created intelligence and the [combined] knowledge of all of them because it cannot be grasped in thought. Thus he says which surpasseth all natural knowledge and every created intellect: “The peace of God, which surpasseth all understanding, keep your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 4:7). For the charity of Christ is [the manifestation of] what God the Father has accomplished through Christ: “God indeed was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself” (2 Cor. 5:19). Alio modo potest legi, ut referatur ad perfectionem charitatis nostrae, quasi dicat: corroboramini in charitate radicati et fundati, et hoc ut possitis comprehendere, non solum cognoscere, cum omnibus sanctis, quia hoc donum, scilicet charitatis, commune est omnibus, cum nullus possit esse sanctus sine charitate, ut dicitur Ephes. c. III. Possitis, inquam, comprehendere quae sit latitudo, scilicet charitatis, quae se extendit usque ad inimicos. Ps. CXVIII, 96: latum mandatum tuum nimis. Lata est enim charitas ad suam diffusionem. Ps. XVII, 20: eduxit me in latitudinem dominus. Longitudo autem eius attenditur quantum ad sui perseverantiam, quia numquam deficit, sed hic incipit et perficitur in gloria. I Cor. XIII, v. 8: charitas numquam excidit. Cant. ult.: aquae multae non potuerunt extinguere charitatem. Sublimitas autem eius attenditur quantum ad intentionem caelestium, ut scilicet Deus non diligatur propter temporalia, quia huiusmodi charitas esset infirma, sed ut diligatur propter se tantum. Iob XL, v. 5: in sublime erigere, et esto gloriosus. Profundum vero attenditur quantum ad originem ipsius charitatis. Nam hoc quod Deum diligimus, non est ex nobis, sed a spiritu sancto, quia, ut dicitur Rom. V, 5, charitas Dei diffusa est in cordibus nostris per spiritum sanctum, et cetera. Hoc ergo quod unus habet charitatem longam, latam, sublimem et profundam, et alius non, venit ex profundo divinae praedestinationis. Eccli. I, 2: profundum abyssi quis dimensus est. The other manner in which this passage (vv. 18-19) can be read is in reference to the perfection of our charity. As though he stated: Be strong, rooted and founded in charity, that you may comprehend—and not merely know—with all the saints; since this gift of charity is common to all, no one can be holy without charity, as the third chapter of Ephesians indicates. May you, I say, comprehend what is the breadth of charity, extending, as it does, even to one’s enemies: “Thy commandment is exceeding broad” (Ps. 118:96). For charity is broad in its diffusion: “And the Lord brought me forth into a broad place” (Ps. 17:20). Its length is seen in its durability, never stopping, it begins in this life and is perfected in glory: “Charity never falleth away” (1 Cor. 13:8), and “Many waters cannot quench charity” (Cant. 8:7). Its height is perceived in its motivation which is heavenly; God is not loved to obtain temporal advantages—which love would be sickly—but be is loved for his own sake alone. “Set thyself up on high and be glorious” (job 40:5). Depth signifies the source of charity itself. For our love of God does not spring from ourselves, but from the Holy Spirit, as Romans 5 (5) mentions: “The charity of God is poured forth in our hearts, by the Holy Ghost who is given to us.” Hence, for one person to possess a love which is lasting, extensive, sublime and deep, while another person does not, arises out of the depth of divine predestination. And “who has measured the depth of the abyss?” (Ecclus. 1:2). Ergo, ut possitis comprehendere, id est perfecte consequi cum omnibus sanctis, quae sit latitudo, ut extendatur charitas vestra usque ad inimicos, quae sit longitudo, ut scilicet numquam deficiat, quae sit sublimitas, ut scilicet propter seipsum Deus diligatur, et quid sit profundum, scilicet praedestinationis, et cetera. Thus you may be able to comprehend, in the sense of perfectly attaining to, with all the saints, what is the breadth with which your charity should extend even to enemies, and what is the length during which it never ceases, and its height in loving God for his own sake, and the depth of the divine predestination [from which it springs]. Sciendum est autem hic quod Christus, in cuius potestate fuit eligere genus mortis quod vellet, quia ex charitate mortem subiit, elegit mortem crucis, in qua praedictae quatuor dimensiones sunt. Ibi est latitudo, scilicet in ligno transverso, cui affixae sunt manus, quia opera nostra debent per charitatem dilatari usque ad inimicos. Ps. XVII, 20: eduxit me in latitudinem dominus. Ibi est longitudo in ligno erecto, cui innititur totum corpus, quia charitas debet esse perseverativa, quae sustinet et salvat hominem. Matth. X, 22: qui autem perseveraverit usque in finem, hic salvus erit. Ibi est sublimitas in ligno superiori, cui caput inhaeret, quia spes nostra debet elevari ad aeterna et divina. I Cor. XI, 3: caput viri Christus est. Ibi etiam est profundum in ligno quod latet sub terra et sustinet crucem, et tamen non videtur, quia profundum amoris divini sustinet nos, nec tamen videtur; quia ratio praedestinationis ut dictum est excedit intellectum nostrum. At this point it should be realized that it was within Christ’s power to choose what type of death he wanted. And since he underwent death out of charity, he chose the death of the cross in which the aforesaid four dimensions are present. The cross-beam has breadth and to it his hands were nailed because through charity our good works ought to stretch out even to adversaries: “The Lord brought me forth into a broad place” (Ps. 17:20). The trunk of the cross has length against which the whole body leans since charity ought to be enduring, thus sustaining and saving man: “He that shall persevere unto the end, he shall be saved” (Mt. 10:22). The projection of wood [above the cross-beam], against which the head is thrown back, has height since our hope must rise toward the eternal and the divine: “The head of every man is Christ” (1 Cor. 11:3). The cross is braced by its depth which lies concealed beneath the ground; it is not seen because the depth of the divine love which sustains us is not visible insofar as the plans of predestination, as was said above, are beyond our intelligence. Sic ergo debemus comprehendere virtutem charitatis nostrae et Christi, et adhuc scire charitatem Christi supereminentem scientiae, scilicet humanae, quia nullus potest scire quantum Christus dilexit nos, vel scire etiam charitatem scientiae Christi, quae habetur cum scientia Christi. Charitatem, dico, supereminentem, scilicet alii charitati, quae est sine scientia. In this manner we should comprehend the power of our love, and of Christ’s, realizing that his surpasses human understanding. For no one could know how much Christ has loved us; nor can one know the charity of the knowledge of Christ, [that love] which is possessed with knowledge of Christ. I hold that such charity surpasses a love which is without knowledge. Sed numquid est verum quod charitas quae est cum scientia superemineat charitati quae est sine scientia? Et videtur quod non, quia sic malus theologus esset supereminentioris charitatis quam sancta vetula. Respondeo. Dico quod hoc intelligitur de scientia afficiente: nam ex vi cognitionis inducitur ad magis diligendum, quia, quanto Deus magis cognoscitur, tanto et magis diligitur. Propter quod petebat Augustinus: noverim te, noverim me. Vel hoc dicitur propter quosdam qui habent zelum Dei, sed non secundum scientiam. Talium enim charitati supereminet charitas, cum habetur praedicta scientia Christi. Is it not correct that a charity with knowledge is more eminent than,a charity without knowledge? It seems that it is not, for then a wicked theologian would have a charity of greater dignity than a holy old woman. I reply that what is discussed here is a knowledge which exerts its influence [on one’s life and conduct]. For the force of the knowledge stimulates one to love more since the more God is known, so much the more is he loved. For this reason Augustine used to ask: “That I may know You and know myself.” Or, this is stated here on account of some who possess zeal for God “but not according to knowledge” (Rom. 10:2). A charity coupled with the above mentioned knowledge of Christ surpasses the love of such people. Consequenter cum dicit ut impleamini, etc., ponit cognitionis divinae efficaciam, dicens ut impleamini in omnem plenitudinem Dei, id est ut habeatis perfectam participationem omnium donorum Dei, ut scilicet hic habeatis plenitudinem virtutum, et postea beatitudinis, quae quidem efficit charitas. Eccli. XXIV, 26: transite ad me, omnes qui concupiscitis me, et cetera. Next he speaks of the efficacy of a knowledge of the divine. That you may be filled unto all the fullness of God, that is, that you might enjoy a perfect participation in all God’s gifts. In other words, that you might possess the fullness of the virtues here, and beatitude in the next life—charity accomplishes just that. “Come over to me, all ye that desire me, and be filled with my fruits” (Ecclus. 24-26). Consequenter sequitur illa pars ei autem qui potens, et cetera. In qua apostolus agit Deo gratias de suae petitionis exauditione. Circa quod tria facit, After this, the Apostle gives thanks to God for hearing his prayer (v. 20). In reference to this he does three things:
quia primo ponit potestatem Dei, qua postulata concedit;
secundo potestatis exemplum, ibi secundum virtutem quae operatur in nobis, etc.;
tertio materiam gratiarum actionis, ibi ipsi gloria, et cetera.
First, he mentions the power of God with which he grants petitions.
Secondly, he gives an example of that power (3:20b).
Thirdly, he mentions what prompts his thanksgiving (3:21).
Potestatem autem Dei describit infinitam, dicens ei autem, scilicet Deo Christo et Deo patri, qui potens est omnia facere, et cetera. Ex. XV, 3: omnipotens nomen eius. Rom. ult.: ei autem qui potens est vos confirmare iuxta Evangelium, et cetera. Et hoc superabundanter facere in nobis omnia quam sciamus petere per affectum, aut intelligere per intellectum, et hoc est quod dicit quam petimus, aut intelligimus. He describes the infinite power of God, saying Now to him, meaning to Christ as God and God the Father, who is able to do all things: “Almighty is his name” (Ex. 15:3). “Now, to him that is able to establish you, according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ” (Rom. 16:25). He effects this within us more abundantly than we either would know how to ask for through desire or understand with our intelligence. Exemplum autem huiusmodi abundantiae in nobis exhibitae ostendit, dicens secundum virtutem quam operatur in nobis, quasi dicat: apparet si attendamus ea quae operatus est in nobis, scilicet hominibus. Nam nec affectus, nec intellectus humanus potuissent considerare, vel intelligere, vel petere a Deo quod fieret homo et homo efficeretur Deus et consors naturae divinae, quae tamen secundum virtutem operatur in nobis, et hoc in incarnatione filii sui. II Petr. I, 4: ut per hoc efficiamini divinae consortes naturae. Unde de his dicitur Eccli. XVIII, 2: quis sufficiet enarrare opera illius? Quis enim investigabit magnalia illius, virtutem autem magnitudinis quis annuntiabit? He gives an example of this profusion within us [of the divine power], saying according to the power that worketh in us. As if he had stated: It becomes apparent once we consider what he has wrought in us men. For the human mind and will could never imagine, understand or ask that God become man, and that man become God and a sharer in the divine nature. But he has done this in us by his power, and it was accomplished in the Incarnation of his Son. “That through this you may be made partakers of the divine nature” (2 Pet. 1:4). Concerning these matters Ecclesiasticus 18 (2-4) says: “Who is able to declare his works? For who shall search out his glorious acts? And who shall shew forth the power of his majesty? Or, who shall be able to declare his mercy?” Vel operatus est in nobis, scilicet apostolis, quibus dedit gratiam evangelizandi investigabiles divitias Christi, et illuminare omnes quae sit dispensatio sacramenti absconditi a saeculis in Deo, ut supra eodem cap. et ibi dictum est. Or, that worketh in us Apostles, to whom he gave the grace of proclaiming the good news of “the unsearchable riches of Christ; and to enlighten all men, that they may see what is the dispensation of the mystery which hath been bidden from eternity in God” (Eph. 3:8). Materia autem gratiarum actionis dicitur esse duplex beneficium quod nobis contulit Deus. Primum est Ecclesiae institutio; secundum est filii incarnatio. Dicit ergo ipsi, scilicet Deo patri, gloria, sit, supple, in Ecclesia, id est pro his quae fecit in Ecclesia, quam instituit: quo ad primum; in Christo, id est per Christum, vel pro Christo, quem nobis dedit. Ipsi, inquam, sit gloria, ut gloriosus appareat, non solum in praesenti sed in omnes generationes saeculi saeculorum, id est saeculi omnia continentis. I Tim. I, 17: regi autem saeculorum immortali, invisibili, soli Deo honor et gloria in saecula saeculorum. Amen. The subject matter of the thanksgiving is the twofold blessing God has bestowed upon us. The first is the institution of the Church, and the second the Incarnation of his Son. Hence he says to him, God the Father, be glory in the Church for all he has done in the Church he established, and in Christ, that is, through Christ; or for Christ whom he gave to us. To him, I repeat, be glory that his glory might shine forth, not only now, but unto all the generations of the age of ages, meaning in the age which embraces all things. “Now, to the King of ages, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen” (1 Tim. 1: 17).