The Divine Lamp

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Father Callan’s Commentary on Hebrews 11:8-19

Posted by Dim Bulb on September 23, 2017

Introduction to Hebrews Chapter 11.

Heb 11:1-38. The close of the preceding Chapter has shown that faith is essential to salvation, and hence the author will now describe so important a virtue and illustrate its value and power by citing some of the religious heroes of the past. These examples of what faith has done for so many of those ancient saints whom Jewish history most revered will be especially consoling to the readers of this Epistle, for it will show them that their own Christian faith is not something new and distinct from the religious assurance and conviction which sustained their ancestors, but rather a continuation of the same sustaining virtue, only on a much more elevated plain.

11:8.  By faith he that is called Abraham, obeyed to go out into a place which he was to receive for an inheritance; and he went out, not knowing whither he went.

8. As Abraham was the supreme example of faith among the Jews, the writer now dwells at length on his faith. The great patriarch’s faith is illustrated: (a) by his obedience to the call of God to go forth from his own country in search of the Promised Land and his wanderings in that strange land (ver. 8-10); (b) by the confidence with which he and his wife Sara received God’s promise of offspring (ver. 11-12); (c) by his willingness to sacrifice Isaac (ver. 17-19).

The call of God came to Abraham in Ur of the Chaldees, and in obedience to it he left home and kindred, wandering and enduring privations and hardships in search of the land of Canaan which God had promised to give to him and his descendants (Gen 12:1ff.).

He that is called Abraham. Here the author alludes to the fact that God, as a mark of special favor, changed the patriarch’s original name Abram to Abraham (Gen17:5).

11:9. By faith he abode in the land as a stranger, dwelling in cottages, with Isaac and Jacob, the co-heirs of the same promise.

9. Faith not only made Abraham obedient to the call of God, but also gave him patience to wait for the fulfillment of God’s promises, dwelling as a sojourner in a foreign country. His son, Isaac, and his grandson, Jacob, persevered in the same faith, never doubting the promise of God. Cf. Gen 12:8, 13:3, 17:1 ff.

11:10. For he looked for a city that hath foundations; whose builder and maker is God.

10. Abraham was sustained in his faith by the conviction that there was an abiding city awaiting him hereafter in heaven, a city whose architect and master-builder is God. The land of Canaan which God had promised him was but a figure of an eternal inheritance which God would bestow upon him above.

A city that hath foundations means the heavenly Jerusalem (12:22; Gal 4:26; Apoc. 21:2).

11: 11. By faith also Sara herself, being barren, received strength to conceive seed, even past the time of age ; because she believed that he was faithful who had promised.
11:12. For which cause there sprung even from one (and him as good as dead) issue like the stars of heaven in multitude, and like the sand which is by the seashore innumerable
.

11-12. Though Sara was already ninety years of age when she received the promise of a son, she believed, even if somewhat less promptly than Abraham, and as a result she was given the power to conceive (Gen 17:17). Likewise, though far beyond the age of begetting children, Abraham, as a reward of his faith, became the father of a posterity as numerous as the stars of heaven and the sands on the sea-shore (Gen 21:17; cf, Rom 4:19).

11:13. All these died according to faith, not having received the promises, but beholding them afar off, and saluting them and confessing that they are pilgrims and strangers on the earth.
11:14. For they that say these things do signify that they seek a country.
11:15. And truly if they had been mindful of that from whence they came out, they had doubtless time to return.
11:16. But now they desire a better, that is to say, a heavenly country. There- fore God is not ashamed to be called their God; for he hath prepared for them a city
.

13-16, In these verses the author interrupts his argument to reflect on the great faith of the patriarchs, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. The vision which faith had disclosed to them was too glorious to find its realization during their lifetime, or on earth.

The fulfillment of the divine promises they saw dimly in the far future; but they were not disappointed, for they sought a city not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. Therefore, God recognized their faith and bestowed on them a celestial home. If the “country” they sought had been the earthly one whence they had come, they could have returned to it; but the object of their quest was “a heavenly country.”

11:17. By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered Isaac, and he that had
received the promises offered up his only-begotten son,
11:18. To whom it was said: In Isaac shall thy seed be called:
11:19. Accounting that God is able to raise up even from the dead. Whereupon also he received him for a parable
.

17-19. The faith of Abraham was sorely tried when God demanded of him the sacrifice of his son Isaac, but the aged patriarch did not waver (Gen 22:1-18). Isaac was indeed the son of promise, who had been born of a freewoman, and on whom the future depended; but at God’s command Abraham made ready to immolate him, feeling sure that He who had given this son in the first instance by a miracle, could restore him if necessary by a second miracle.

Isaac is called “the only-begotten son,” because to him alone were the promises made, Ishmael being excluded from them.

Whereupon also he received him for a parable, i.e., as a reward of his faith Abraham received his son safely back from the jaws of death, and this delivery made Isaac a “parable,” i.e., a figure or type of the sacrifice and resurrection of Christ.

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Father MacEvilly’s Commentary on Hebrews 11:8-18

Posted by Dim Bulb on September 23, 2017

ANALYSIS OF HEBREWS CHAPTER 11

The Hebrews, it would appear, were not sufficiently impressed with the importance and necessity of faith; and were, therefore, in danger of losing it by apostasy. They were taught to look upon it as a mode of justifying wholly unknown to the saints of the Old Testament; and to these false notions, with which they were imbued, inight be traced their fatal facility, in deserting it under the pressure of persecution. The Apostle (10:38) takes occasion from the words of the Prophet Habacuc, to confute this pernicious error. Before making the application of it, in this chapter, to the sainted heroes of old, he first gives a description offaith, describing it by two of its qualities best accommodated to the circumstances of those, whom he addresses (verse 1).

In the next place, applying this faith to the saints of old, he shows that it was owing to if, the most distinguished among them obtained justification (2-39).

He, finally shows the great advantage which we, in the New Law, possess over the ancients. We can, at once, enter on the possession of the promised blessings, while they were obliged to wait for our time to enjoy them in common with us; and, surely, we should display no less heroism in the cause of faith, of which the blessings and promise are present, than they did, for whom the fulfilment of the promise was distant.

Heb 11:8  By faith he that is called Abraham obeyed to go out into a place which he was to receive for an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing whither he went.

“He that is called.” The Greek copy, followed by the Vulgate, had, ὅ  καλουμενος. This is also the reading of the Alexandrian Manuscript. In this reading, allusion is made to the change of name in Abraham (Genesis, xvii. 3). The article (ὅ) is omitted in the ordinary Greek copies, and the words are rendered, Abraham, when called, obeyed to go, &c., in which rendering the participle “called,” which in the Greek, is the present tense, receives a past signification. Our reading is, however, the better sustained.

Heb 11:9  By faith he abode in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in cottages, with Isaac and Jacob, the co-heirs of the same promise.

He dwell as a pilgrim in the land of promise where he did not occupy a foot of  ground, as his fixed habitation, “with Isaac and Jacob:” “with” has the meaning of as well as, it denotes parity of circumstances, Though it might be said that he dwelt in tents with Isaac and Jacob; for, Jacob was fifteen years old at Abraham’s death,the former meaning, viz. : they, as well as Abraham, dwelt successively in tents; is the more probable.

Heb 11:10  For he looked for a city that hath foundations: whose builder and maker is God.

“For, he looked for a city,” &c. In this verse, the Apostle proves that it was owing to faith that Abraham dwelt as a stranger in moveable tents in the land of promise, because he locked forward to the heavenly city of eternal stability, firmly fixed and founded by God himself. What an idea of the condition of man here below is conveyed to us, in the faith of the Patriarch!—like him, we are here but strangers in this foreign land; heaven is our true home, our eternal dwelling-place, on which our thoughts and affections should be fixed. Our conversation should be in heaven, whither we are tending.

Heb 11:11  By faith also Sara herself, being barren, received strength to conceive seed, even past the time of age: because she believed that he was faithful who had promised.

“Being barren.” These words are omitted in the ordinary Greek copies, but they are found in the Alexandrian and other Manuscripts.

Objection.—Was not Sara rebuked by the angel for laughing from incredulity?—(Genesis, xxiii. 15).

Answer.—Although Sara smiled at first, still, on discovering the dignity of him who made the promise, she believed. Some, among whom is Estius, by “faith” understand the faith of Abraham himself, which the Apostle would appear to be specially commending, and in consideration of which, Sara conceived; in the same way, the walls of Jericho are said to have fallen by faith, i.e., the faith of the Jews, and the following verse in some measure favours this opinion. However, the following words, “She believed,” are in favour of the other interpretation. “To conceive seed;” to which the Greek adds, and brought forth.

Heb 11:12  For which cause there sprung even from one (and him as good as dead) as the stars of heaven in multitude and as the sand which is by the sea shore innumerable.

“As the stars… as the sand,” &c. These are hyperboles easily understood, signifying a very numerous progeny. They may refer to carnal Israel, in the first place, and to spiritual Israel, or to all Christians, in the second.

Heb 11:13  All these died according to faith, not having received the promises but beholding them afar off and saluting them and confessing that they are pilgrims and strangers on the earth.

“All these,” i.e., the three last mentioned Patriarchs, to whom were made the promises, “died according to faith,” i.e., persevered till death in faith, believing in God’s promises, although they did not receive the promises, nor did they enjoy them immediately themselves. This is true, whether the promises be referred to the occupation of Chanaan by their innumerable offspring, or to heaven, which was closed until after the ascension of Christ; they contessed themse.ves, on aii occasions, to be foreigners and sojourners on earth; “but beholding them from afar, and saluting them,” like sailors, who, after a dangerous and distant voyage, on descrying land for the first time, joyously salute it. After the words, “beholding them afar off,” are added in some Greek copies, being persuaded of them. But, this addition is generally rejected by critics, as unsupported by the authority of the chief Manuscripts. The Apostle refers to the promises, which the Patriarchs themselves did not obtain during life, in order to show the firmness of their faith, and thus to animate the Hebrews, of his own day, to perseverance under affliction, although the promised goods of heaven in store for them, were distant and invisible; for, tiiey had been stih more so, for the Patriarchs.

Heb 11:14  For they that say these things do signify that they seek a country.

Having observed in the preceding verse, that the Patriarchs died without obtaining the promises, the Apostle shows what the promises regarded, at least, so far as they themselves were to enjoy them; surely, not the possession by them or the land of Chanaan; for, by saying they saluted them from afar, there could not be question of the place where they actually dwelt. Moreover, by calling themselves pilgrims, they showed that they were in search of some permanent country, and Cnanaan was not their country.

Heb 11:15  And truly, if they had been mindful of that from whence they came out, they had doubtless, time to return.

Nor was there question of Chaldea; for, if so, they might have returned, as it was not more than fifty leagues distant from Chanaan.

Heb 11:16  But now they desire a better, that is to say, a heavenly country. Therefore, God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city.

Then, it follows, they were in search of a better, that is to say, their heavenly country; hence it is, that God, though God of all mankind, calls hiuiseit their God in particular, as if rendering them equal value with the rest of creation.

Heb 11:17  By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son,

Some interpreters make the words, “he who had received the promises,” refer to Isaac, thus: he offered up his only begotten son, who had received the promises. The former construction, which refers it to Abraham s receiving the promises, is more probable, as appears from the following verse. “Offered Isaac,” i.e., was aboutoffering him, and would have done so if he were not prevented; he did so in heart and will.

Heb 11:18  (To whom it was said: In Isaac shalt thy seed be called).

The seed promised him was to come only through Isaac. Hence, the heroic firmness of Abraham’s faith in sacrificing him.

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Commentaries for the Feast of the Holy Innocents, Martyrs

Posted by Dim Bulb on September 23, 2017

Today’s Mass Readings.

St Augustine’s Homily on 1 John 1:5-2:2.

Navarre Bible Commentary on 1 John 1:5-2:2.

Cornelius a Lapide’s Commentary on 1 John 1:5-2:2.

Father Boylan’s Introduction to Psalm 124.

Pope Benedict XVI on Psalm 124.

Cornelius a Lapide’s Commentary on Matthew 2:13-18.

Father MacEvilly’s Commentary on Matthew 2:13-18. On 13-23.

My Notes on Matthew 2:13-18.

Navarre Bible Commentary on Matthew 2:13-18.

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Father MacEvilly’s Commentary on Luke 2:41-52

Posted by Dim Bulb on September 23, 2017

41 And his parents went every year to Jerusalem, at the solemn day of the pasch.

And His parents went every year,” &c. The men were commanded by the law of Moses (Exodus 23:14–17; 34:23; Deut. 16:16) to go to the Temple three times in the year, viz., at the solemn festivals of the Pasch, Pentecost, and Tabernacles. It was not enjoined on the women; the Blessed Virgin, however, out of devotion, accompanied her husband. Whether Joseph himself went up on these three occasions, or, only at the Pasch—the greatest solemnity of all—and whether Mary accompanied him on these three occasions, with the child Jesus, is disputed. Some hold, Joseph went up only at the Pasch, from which there was no dispensation; and that, on account of the great distance of Jerusalem from Nazareth, he was dispensed from going to the two other feasts. It is, however, more commonly held, that Joseph attended on all three occasions each year; and that his holy Virgin spouse accompanied him on these several occasions; and, as it is most unlikely, they left their heavenly charge behind them; it is, therefore, commonly held that our Lord always accompanied them. Moreover, in this, they would give a lesson to parents as to the practical early teaching of children in the duties of religion. But, St. Luke refers only to their annual attendance at the Pasch, as it was only at the Pasch, the following wonderful occurrence, in the Temple, where our Lord showed He was “full of wisdom,” took place. He does not deny it regarding other occasions. And, although the cruel Archelaus still reigned in Jerusalem, the dread of whose cruelty caused Joseph to give up all idea of dwelling in Judea (Matt. 2); still, the parents of the child naturally expected He would pass unnoticed in the crowd that flocked to Jerusalem on these solemn festivals. Besides, they had great trust in Providence, for whose honour and service they underwent this risk, and they dreaded offending God, by neglect, more than the danger they incurred from Archelaus, which was diminished by their immediate return home on each occasion. Some hold, that our Redeemer did not go to the Temple till he was twelve years old, when, according to them, Archelaus, in the tenth year of his reign, was banished by Augustus, and sent into exile. Hence, no danger from him.

42 And when he was twelve years old, they going up into Jerusalem, according to the custom of the feast,

To the end of this verse should be added, in order to complete the sense, the words, “the child also went up with them.”

43 And having fulfilled the days, when they returned, the child Jesus remained in Jerusalem. And his parents knew it not.

They religiously remained till the Octave day, although not bound to remain, at Jerusalem; and then, returned home, while “the child Jesus remained in Jerusalem.” Some say, He rendered Himself invisible on this, as He did on subsequent occasions (Origen in Luc., Hom. 19). He assigns Himself the reason of His remaining (v. 49).

And His parents knew it not.” Some Greek copies have, “Joseph and His mother knew it not.” Very likely, He concealed His design from His parents, lest if He asked their permission, which they probably might refuse, He would seem guilty of disobedience by remaining; and He also may have in view to show, He had a more exalted Parent in heaven, whose glory and business He should promote, independently of all earthly relations and considerations. He wished, by remaining, to give a glimpse of the glory concealed within Him, and to prepare men for its manifestation in due time, marked out in the decrees of His Eternal Father. He “remained,” not by accident, but, by the all-ruling designs of Providence. The parents may be freed from the charge of negligence regarding Him, if it be borne in mind, that those of the same neighbourhood and kindred returned in companies: those of one household being mixed up with those of another, till, at evening, they were to be recognised at the place of public entertainment. Probably, the men formed one company apart; and the women, another. Thus, Joseph might have supposed that the Divine Infant was with His mother’s company; and, His mother, that he was with Joseph. This is held by St. Bernard (Serm. infra Octav. Epiph.), by Ven. Bede, St. Bonaventure, &c. However, the Evangelist seems to favour the former supposition, viz., that the persons of the same neighbourhood used to travel in companies without minding the distinction of families, or household, on their journey, till they halted at evening. For, he says, His parents thought, “He was in the company,” among whom they searched for Him in the evening.

44 And thinking that he was in the company, they came a day’s journey and sought him among their kinsfolks and acquaintance.

They came a day’s journey.” Nazareth was three days’ journey from Jerusalem. “And sought Him,” when they reached the term of their day’s journey, at the place of common resort. The Evangelist would seem to exculpate Mary and Joseph, as the practice of allowing children to travel with the members of the same company was probably quite common, and it may be, that our Lord did so on former occasions when He went up, in company with them, to attend the festival celebrations at Jerusalem.

45 And not finding him, they returned into Jerusalem, seeking him.

They returned to Jerusalem,” as they got no tidings from any one regarding His having been seen leaving it. “Seeking Him,” inquiring regarding Him on their way thither.

46 And it came to pass, that, after three days, they found him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the doctors, hearing them and asking them questions.

After three days,” or on the third day after they left. It is quite common in Sacred Scriptures to say that a thing occurred after a day on which it took place (v. 21; also Mark 8:31). One day was spent on their way home; a second, on their return to Jerusalem. On the third, they found Him. “They found Him in the Temple,” engaged in His Father’s business, in His Father’s house, and not in places of public diversion or entertainment. Probably, the “Temple” here means, a court of it, in which the doctors sat for the purpose of public instruction.

Sitting in the midst of the doctors,” not that the child took His place among them. This His own modesty would forbid, and the pride of these learned teachers would not submit to it. It only means, that He was sitting in their presence, as a hearer, listening to them treating of the Divine law.

Hearing them and asking them questions.” He so managed His questions, which He proposed modestly, not by way of disputation, as to convey knowledge; and, in turn, elicited from them questions, to which He replied with marvellous wisdom and knowledge. It was wonderful to see this child of twelve, answering and proposing questions connected with the Law of God to these learned doctors, which elicited the admiration of all. It is very likely, He managed to turn their attention to the great question of the coming of their Messiah, and to the fulfilment of all the prophecies that had reference to Him, viz., the passing away of the sceptre from Judah—the seventy weeks of Daniel, &c. Very likely, He proved the Messiah must now have come. His personal appearance showed His human nature; the maturity of His judgment and knowledge, and wisdom, at that age, showed He was something more than man. He thus early gave a passing proof of what He was. He darted forth a ray of His Divinity in order to prepare men for a fuller manifestation of it, when He would, at no distant day, enter on His public mission, and the instruction of the world.

47 And all that heard him were astonished at his wisdom and his answers.

His wisdom and His answers,” that is, the wisdom of His answers.

48 And seeing him, they wondered. And his mother said to him: Son, why hast thou done so to us? Behold thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing.

His parents “seeing Him, wondered.” Not that it caused them surprise to see Him, whom they knew to be the Eternal Son of God, display such knowledge. But as He never before publicly acted thus—very likely in private, He might have given proofs of His latent Divinity—they were surprised at His doing so now, for the first time, the more so, as it was these very doctors who had been consulted formerly by Herod the Great as to the place of His birth (Matthew 2:4), and this wonderful display, on the part of so young a child might make them suspect, He was the very Messiah referred to.

His mother said to Him,” not in a spirit of rebuke or reproach, but, from a feeling of sorrow that had hitherto overwhelmed her and her blessed spouse, she lovingly addresses Him—“Son,” specially confided to my care by your Heavenly Father, “why hast Thou done so to us?”—to leave us without knowing it, and thus overwhelm us with unspeakable sorrow at your loss and absence, and the fear lest through any fault of ours, we should have the unspeakable misfortune of losing you for ever. Joseph, who knew he had no claim of paternity, save that he was His reputed father, the husband of her who gave Him birth, observes a guarded and respectful silence, though, he also was oppressed with grief at the loss of the child.

Behold Thy father,” commonly reputed such by men, “and I have sought Thee sorrowing,” fearing lest we might be guilty of any neglect, or have merited the punishment of losing you. It is likely, the Virgin thus spoke to Him apart, after they left the meeting of the doctors in the Temple, and she lovingly gives Joseph a share in their common sorrow and anxiety concerning Him. St. Augustine here notes the singular modesty and humility of the Virgin, in putting Joseph before herself, “Thy father and I,” thus giving an example of the respect wives should never fail to show their husbands.

49 And he said to them: How is it that you sought me? Did you not know that I must be about my father’s business?

How is it that you sought Me?” as if He said, It is a wonder you, who knew who I am, viz., the Eternal Son of God, did not reflect, that My departure and absence for a time, was not the result of mere accident; that it was arranged by the all—ruling providence of My Eternal Father. In this, He by no means censures or blames them, since they did only what it was right and natural for them to do. They were guilty of no fault, and therefore gave no cause for blame or censure. It was great natural affection, and a laudable pious solicitude and fear for the safety of their heavenly charge, that prompted them in what they had done.

Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?” The Virgin mother had speken of His putative father on earth; He refers to His true and Eternal Father in heaven. This Father sent Him to earth to redeem mankind. It was to this all His thoughts and actions were to be referred; it was to this, His appearing on this occasion in the Temple was to be attributed. These are the words recorded in the Gospel as the first spoken by our Lord, and they convey to us the most important of all lessons, viz., that we should be always engaged in the business of our Heavenly Father, and the advancement of His glory. In them, He also conveys, that while subject in all His merely human actions, to His earthly parents, still, when aims and objects of a higher order interfered, He ceased to be subject to them, or to be influenced by any human feelings or affections whatever. In regard to His mission, He was to be guided, solely by the good-will and pleasure of His Eternal Father in heaven, to have no dependence on flesh or blood; to know neither father nor mother on earth. These words, though apparently reproachful, convey not a reproof, because such was undeserved; but only instruction to His parents regarding His relations towards them, His utter independence of them, whenever the work of God was to be done, and His Father’s precept urgent; and consolation also, by intimating that it was solely on account of the loftier duties that devolved upon Him, He was forced as it were, to ignore them, and cause them the sorrow and pain they lately endured.

Whenever in the Gospel, there is mention of any interference on the part of friends in what was peculiarly the business of His Eternal Father, and the action of His Divine nature, our Lord employs language apparently reproachful, (though really not so, because unmerited, as in this case) for the instruction of children in all ages, as to how they are to act whenever their parents, or feelings of natural affection, would interfere with what is clearly their duty towards God; as for instance, should parents unreasonably oppose their children’s entrance into religion, when clearly called to that state by God. In such a case, ordinarily speaking, the higher call of duty to God is to be preferred.

50 And they understood not the word that he spoke unto them.

And they understood not,” &c. Although the parents of our Redeemer, especially the Holy Virgin, knew our Lord to be the Eternal Son of the Father, and that He was sent into this world to save mankind, and promote His Father’s glory; still, they did not fully comprehend the meaning of His words. They did not see what connexion His withdrawal from them, His appearing at that age in the Temple and disputation with the doctors had with this general object. No doubt, the Blessed Virgin was at this time perfect in charity; but, we need not suppose her perfect in the gift of knowledge. God gradually developed the fulness of this gift in her, and left her nescient of several details connected with her Son, which she knew in course of time. Although Mary and Joseph did not fully understand our Lord’s words, they devoutly and reverently acquiesced in all He said without asking further questions, without entertaining or expressing any doubts regarding them, fully resigning themselves to the Divine will, perfectly satisfied with having found and received Him back again.

51 And he went down with them and came to Nazareth and was subject to them. And his mother kept all these words in her heart.

And was subject to them.” Having for a moment displayed His Divinity, and after showing in what things children are not subject to their parents, He now returns to His usual occupations, and gives an example of obedience to His earthly parents in their home at Nazareth, which all children are strictly bound to follow, under pain of being deprived of the special reward promised to dutiful children, and of being excluded from the inheritance, or land which the Lord God is to give them. The Evangelist, probably, adds this to let us see, that the passing manifestation of His Divine origin did not exempt Him from the duty of obedience, which, as man, He felt to be due to His parents in human and domestic affairs. It is likely, He laboured as a carpenter, and assisted Joseph in his workshop. Hence, called “a carpenter” (Mark 6:3), as well as “the carpenter’s Son” (Matthew 13:55). From these words we see the great merit of obedience, the entire private life of our Lord, from the age of twelve to thirty, being briefly summed up in these words, “et crat subditus illis.” This is the abridgment of Christian duty. The spirit of religion is a spirit of submission; its practice is the practice of obedience. On these words, St. Bernard (Sermo 1, super missus est), cries out, Who was subject? God. To whom? To men. He, whom the powers of heaven obey, was subject to Mary, and not to Mary only; but to Joseph. On both sides, an astounding wonder. On both sides, a miracle. That God would obey a woman, is an instance of unexampled humility. That a woman should rule a God, of unequalled sublimity. Blush, proud ashes, a God humbles Himself; and dost thou exalt thyself? A God subjects Himself to man, and dost thou anxiously wish to prefer thyself to the Author of thy being? Learn therefore, man, to obey; learn, O earth, to be subject; and thou, O dust, to submit.

His mother kept all these words in her heart.” She constantly meditated on all the words and acts and events connected with her Son, whom she knew to be God, thus nourishing her piety, acquiring a more certain knowledge of all the mysteries of His life, which she might be enabled to communicate with undoubting certainty to the Apostles and Evangelists, who were, at the appointed time, to announce them throughout the world. It is likely, it was from her, St. Luke obtained the information he here gives regarding the Incarnation, birth and infancy of our Redeemer.

We have no further mention of Joseph in the Gospel. It is likely he passed to his reward, before our Lord entered on His public mission. No doubt, with Jesus and Mary presiding at his death bed, the approach of death only revealed to him, by anticipation, the unspeakable joys in store for him. We find no mention of him even at the first public manifestation of our Saviour at the marriage feast of Cana in Galilee. (John 2, &c.)

52 And Jesus advanced in wisdom and age and grace with God and men.

And Jesus advanced in wisdom and age,” &c. Hitherto the Evangelist called Him “the child,” παιδιον; but, henceforth, after His having displayed so much wisdom, he calls Him “Jesus.” Nothing more is recorded of Him, than that He was subject to His parents, probably toiling in His workshop with His reputed father (Mark 6:3), and discharging faithfully all the other offices of a dutiful son. “And He advanced in wisdom and age.” The word “age,” may mean stature, ἡλκία, as it is rendered (Luke 12:25). How it is He “advanced in wisdom,” in whom, from His Incarnation, from the moment of the hypostatic union, when the Holy Ghost anointed Him with “the oil of gladness beyond His fellows,” were “hid all the treasures of knowledge and of wisdom” (Col. 2:2); “who was full of grace and of truth” (John 1:14), has caused a difference of opinion among Commentators. The usual modes of explaining this point are—First, He advanced in the external manifestation of hidden wisdom, by words and acts proportioned to His advancing age, which, before men, were indications of greater wisdom; from wise words and acts, progressing to acts and words wiser still; the interior habit, however, or fund of infused wisdom which was perfect from the Incarnation in a finite degree, of which alone the soul of Christ was capable, received no real increase; just as the sun, according to its position above the horizon, increases not in itself, as it is always the same; but, in its effects, in its light and greater brilliancy in regard to us. In SS. Scripture, words and external acts emanating from wisdom, are called “wisdom.” Thus, “The queen of the south came to hear the wisdom of Solomon” (Luke 11:31; Matthew 12:42). Thus it is said, “we speak the wisdom of God” (1 Cor. 2:7). Secondly, He increased in wisdom, as to a new mode of acquiring it, viz., experimentally, He advanced in acquired experimental knowledge, which He had not before, and which could result from experience only, just as is said of Him, “And whereas, indeed, He was the Son of God, He learned obedience by the things which He suffered” (Heb. 5:8).

And grace with God and man.” As regards men, all His acts, His entire demeanour procured Him greater favour and acceptability with them, conciliated more and more the esteem and love of all. This has reference to His private hidden life. In His public missionary life, many, for whose ruin He was set, were found to find fault with Him, owing to their own perversity.

In regard to God, He increased in grace, inasmuch as its external manifestation before men was genuine, and not affected, but real in the sight of God, who felt complacency in this external manifestation of it before men. While His body grew in stature, His soul grew in wisdom and grace, not as to the internal habit, but, as to its external manifestation in acts before men, which was not affected but real, emanating from the internal habit, as seen by God and pleasing in His sight.

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Commentaries for the Fourth Week of Advent

Posted by Dim Bulb on September 23, 2017

SPECIAL NOTE: The weekday readings for the Fourth Week of Advent always fall sometime between December 17-24. Click on the link provided and find the appropriate date with its corresponding commentaries.

FOURTH SUNDAY OF ADVENT
We are in Year B

Year A Commentaries.

Year B Commentaries.

Year C Commentaries.

Last Week’s Posts.

MONDAY OF THE FOURTH WEEK OF ADVENT

 

Pick the appropriate date. Commentaries on the weekday readings Dec 17-24.

TUESDAY OF THE FOURTH WEEK OF ADVENT

Pick the appropriate date. Commentaries on the weekday readings Dec 17-24.

 

WEDNESDAY OF THE FOURTH WEEK OF ADVENT

Pick the appropriate date. Commentaries on the weekday readings Dec 17-24.

 

THURSDAY OF THE FOURTH WEEK OF ADVENT

Pick the appropriate date. Commentaries on the weekday readings Dec 17-24.

 

FRIDAY OF THE FOURTH WEEK OF ADVENT

Pick the appropriate date. Commentaries on the weekday readings Dec 17-24.

SATURDAY OF THE FOURTH WEEK OF ADVENT

Pick the appropriate date. Commentaries on the weekday readings Dec 17-24.

 

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Commentaries on the Mass Readings for December 17-24

Posted by Dim Bulb on September 23, 2017

NOTE: When a Sunday falls on one of these dates the Sunday readings are used.

DECEMBER 17

Today’s Divine Office.

Father Maas’ Commentary on Genesis 49:2, 8-10. On 8-12.

Navarre Bible Commentary on Genesis 49:2, 8-10.

Father Boylan’s Introduction to Psalm 72.

St Augustine’s Notes on Psalm 72.

St Robert Bellarmine’s Commentary on Psalm 72.

Pope John Paul II’s Commentary on Psalm 72.

Maldonado’s Commentary on Matthew 1:1-17.

Father MacEvilly’s Commentary on Matthew 1:1-17.

Aquinas’ Catena Aurea on Matthew 1:1-17.

Thephylact’s Commentary on Matthew 1:1-17. Non-Catholic. Late 11th century. Considered a saint by some Orthodox churches.

Navarre Bible Commentary on Matthew 1:1-17.

DECEMBER 18

Today’s Mass Readings.

Today’s Divine Office.

Father Maas’ Commentary on Jeremiah 23:5-8. On 23:1-8, and 33:14-26.

Navarre Bible Commentary on Jeremiah 23:5-8.

Father Boylan’s Introduction to Psalm 72.

St Augustine’s Notes on Psalm 72.

St Robert Bellarmine’s Commentary on Psalm 72.

Pope John Paul II’s Commentary on Psalm 72.

Cornelius a Lapide’s Commentary on Matthew 1:18-25.

Maldonado’s Commentary on Matthew 1:18-25.

Aquinas’ Catena Aurea on Matthew 1:18-25.

Father MacEvilly’s Commentary on Matthew 1:18-25.

Father Maas’ Commentary on Matthew 1:18-25.

Navarre Bible Commentary on Matthew 1:18-25.

DECEMBER 19

Today’s Mass Readings.

Today’s Divine Office.

Pending (maybe): My Notes on Judges 13:2-7, 24-25.

Navarre Bible Commentary on Judges 13:2-7, 24-25.

Father Boylan’s Introduction to Psalm 71.

St Augustine’s Notes on Psalm 71.

Patristic/Medieval Commentary on Psalm 71.

My Notes on Psalm 71. Just on today’s verses.

Father MacEvilly’s Commentary on Luke 1:5-25.

Aquinas’ Catena Aurea on Luke 1:5-25.

Navarre Bible Commentary on Luke 1:5-25.

DECEMBER 20

Today’s Mass Readings.

Today’s Divine Office.

Father Maas’ Commentary on Isaiah 7:10-14. On 1-17.

St Bernard’s Homily on Isaiah 7:10-14.

Father Boylan’s Introduction to Psalm 24.

Patristic/Medieval Commentary on Psalm 24:1-6. Covers today’s verses.

St Thomas Aquinas’ Lecture on Psalm 24.

St Robert Bellarmine’s Commentary on Psalm 24.

Pope John Paul II’s Commentary on Psalm 24.

Aquinas’ Catena Aurea on Luke 1:26-38.

Bishop MacEvilly’s Commentary on Luke 1:26-38.

Father Callan’s Commentary on Luke 1:26-38.

DECEMBER 21

Today’s Mass Readings. Note: an alternate 1st reading is allowed.

Today’s Divine Office.

Pending (maybe): St Bernard on Song of Songs 2:8-14.

Navarre Bible Commentary on the Song of Songs 2:8-14.

Alt First Reading: My Notes on Zephaniah 3:14-18.

Alt. First Reading: Navarre Bible Commentary on Zephaniah 3:14-18.

Father Boylan’s Introduction to Psalm 33.

St Augustine’s Notes on Psalm 33.

Patristic/Medieval Commentary on Psalm 33.

St Thomas Aquinas’ Lecture on Psalm 33.

Pope John Paul II’s Commentary on Psalm 33.

Aquinas’ Catena Aurea on Luke 1:39-45.

Cornelius a Lapide’s Commentary on Luke 1:39-45.

Father MacEvilly’s Commentary on Luke 1:39-45.

Navarre Bible Commentary on Luke 1:39-45.

DECEMBER 22

Today’s Mass Readings.

Today’s Divine Office.

Navarre Bible Commentary on 1 Samuel 1:24-28.

Pope John Paul II’s Commentary on Today’s Responsorial (1 Samuel 2:1, 4-8). On 1-10.

Cornelius a Lapide’s Commentary on Luke 1:46-56.

Pope Benedict XVI’s Commentary on Luke 1:46-56.

Father MacEvilly’s Commentary on Luke 1:46-56.

Aquinas’ Catena Aurea on Luke 1:46-56.

Navarre Bible Commentary on Luke 1:46-56.

DECEMBER 23

Today’s Mass Readings.

Today’s Divine Office.

My Notes on Malachi 3:1-4, 23-24.

Navarre Bible Commentary on Malachi 3:1-4, 23-24.

Father Boylan’s Introduction to Psalm 25.

Father Berry’s Introduction to Psalm 25.

St Augustine on Psalm 25.

Patristic/Medieval Commentary on Psalm 25.

Lectio Divina Notes on Psalm 25.

Some Rambling on Psalm 25. “Off the top of my head” reflections on St John the Baptist in relation to today’s first reading (the Baptist is the focal point of both the first and Gospel readings today).

Aquinas’ Catena Aurea on Luke 1:57-66.

Father MacEvilly’s Commentary on Luke 1:57-66.

DECEMBER 24

Today’s Mass Readings.

Today’s Divine Office.

St Augustine on 2 Samuel 7:4-5a, 12-14a, 16 and Psalm 89.

Father Boylan’s Introduction to Psalm 89.

St Augustine’s Notes on Psalm 89.

Patristic/Medieval Commentary on Psalm 89.

St Robert Bellarmine’s Commentary on Psalm 89.

Aquinas’ Catena Aurea on Luke 1:67-79.

Pope John Paul II’s Commentary on Luke 1:67-79.

Father MacEvilly’s Commentary on Luke 1:67-79.

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Extraordinary Form: Commentaries for Holy Thursday

Posted by Dim Bulb on August 12, 2017

MISSAL AND BREVIARY:

Roman Missal.

Roman Breviary.

Devout Instructions on the Epistle and Gospel.

COMMENTARIES ON THE EPISTLE: 1 Corinthians 11:20-32.

Father Callan’s Commentary on 1 Cor 11:20-32.

Bernardin de Piconio’s Commentary on 1 Cor 11:20-32.

Pending: Father MacEvilly’s Commentary on 1 Corinthians 11:20-32.

Pending: Father Cornelius a Lapide’s Commentary on 1 Corinthians 11:20-32.

EWTN’s In the Footsteps of St Paul. Listen to episode 8.

COMMENTARIES ON THE GOSPEL: John 13:1-15.

Aquinas’ Catena Aurea on John 13:1-15 for the Evening Mass of the Lord’s Supper.

St Cyril of Alexandria on John 13:1-15 for the Evening Mass of the Lord’s Supper.

Pending: Father MacEvilly’s Commentary on John 13:1-15.

Pending: Father Cornelius a Lapide’s Commentary on John 13:1-15.

Pending: St John Chrysostom’s Homiletic Commentary on John 13:1-15.

Pending: St Augustine’s Tractates on John 13:1-15.

St Irenaeus Ministries Podcast on John: The Last Supper.

 

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Extraordinary Form: Commentaries for Wednesday in Holy Week

Posted by Dim Bulb on August 12, 2017

Roman Missal. Latin and English side by side. Be sure correct date is set.

Roman Breviary. Latin and English side by side. Be sure correct date is set.

Pending: My Notes on Isaiah 62:11- 63:7.

St Cyril Of Alexandria’s Exegetical Homilies On The Passion Of Luke in 7 Parts:

On Luke 21:37-22:16.  Two homilies in one post.
On Luke 22:17-30.
On Luke 22:31-38.
On Luke 22:39-53.
On Luke 22:54-71.
On Luke 23:1-31.
On Luke 23:32-43.  The last part of this homily has not come down to us.  Likewise, the last few homilies in this series have survived only in fragments, which I have included in this post.

Navarre Bible Commentary on Luke 22:1-23:53. Actually, the commentary begins at verse 14.

Father Donald Senior’s Commentary on Luke in 6 Parts:

1. The Last Supper (Luke 22:1-38).
2. The Hour of Darkness (Luke 22:39-65).
3. Jesus on Trial (Luke 22:66-23:25).
4. The Way of the Cross (Luke 23:26-32).
5. The Death of the Just Man (Luke 23:33-49).
6. Death and Victory (Luke 23:50-56). Site misidentifies the passage as 22:1-38, so don’t let if fool you.

GENERAL POSTS:

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Extraordinary Form: Commentaries for Tuesday of Holy Week.

Posted by Dim Bulb on August 12, 2017

EXTRAORDINARY FORM
TUESDAY OF HOLY WEEK
Feria Tertia Hebdomadæ Sanctæ

Roman Missal. Latin and English side by side. Be sure correct date is set.

Roman Breviary. Latin and English side by side. Be sure correct date is set.

Navarre Bible Commentary on Jeremiah 11:18-20.

Navarre Bible Commentary on Mark 14:1-15:47.

Father Donald Senior’s Commentary on Mark’s Passion Narrative in Six Parts:

1. Fidelity and Betrayal: The Passion Begins.

2. The Final Passover.

3. Gethsemane: Prayer and Arrest.

4. Confession and Denial: Interrogation by the Sanhedrin.

5. The Roman Trial.

6.Crucifixion.

MORE RESOURCES PENDING

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Extraordinary Form: Commentaries for Monday of Holy Week

Posted by Dim Bulb on August 12, 2017

EXTRAORDINARY FORM
MONDAY OF HOLY WEEK
Feria Secunda Hebdomadæ Sanctæ

Roman Missal. Latin and English side by side. Be sure correct date is set.

Roman Breviary. Latin and English side by side. Be sure correct date is set.

Navarre Bible Commentary on Isaiah 50:5-10. On 4-9a.

Aquinas Catena Aurea on John 12:1-9. On verses 1-12.

St Augustine on John 12:1-9). On verse 1-12.

Cornelius a Lapide’s Commentary on John 12:1-9. On verse 1-12.

FURTHER RESOURCES PENDING

 

Posted in Bible, Catholic, Catholic lectionary, Extraordinary Form, Latin Mass Notes, Notes on the Lectionary, Scripture | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
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